Flash Card

LAKSHYA-75 [Day-24] Static Flash Cards for IAS Prelims 2020

The Message of Mahavira; Survey become important under the colonial administration; Approaches to Human Development; Trans–Continental Railways; Trans–Siberian Railway; Trans–Canadian Railways; The Union and Pacific Railway; The Australian Trans–Continental Railway; The Orient Express; Main sectors of the economy; Rock Cycle; Soil-forming Factors; Development of Mahayana Buddhism; Amar Katha; Permanent Settlement;
By IASToppers
March 30, 2020



The Permanent Settlement permanently increased the power of the zamindar to collect rent from the ryot and manage his zamindari during the colonial time. True OR False.

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Answer: False.

Correct Statements: The Permanent Settlement initially limited the power of the zamindar to collect rent from the ryot and manage his zamindari during the colonial time.

Enrich Your Learning:

Why zamindars defaulted on payments during colonial rule?

  • High initial demand:The initial demand was very high. It was felt that if the demand was fixed for all time to come, the Company would never be able to claim a share of increased income from land when prices rose and cultivation expanded. To minimise this anticipated loss, the Company pegged the revenue demand high, arguing that the burden on zamindars would gradually decline as agricultural production expanded and prices rose.
  • Imposition of high demand: This high demand was imposed in the 1790s, a time when the prices of agricultural produce were depressed, making it difficult for the ryots (raiyat, used to designate peasants) to pay their dues to the zamindar. If the zamindar could not collect the rent, how could he pay the Company?
  • The revenue was invariable: The revenue was invariable, regardless of the harvest, and had to be paid punctually. In fact, according to the Sunset Law, if payment did not come in by sunset of the specified date, the zamindari was liable to be auctioned.
  • Powers of Zamindars limited: The Permanent Settlement initially limited the power of the zamindar to collect rent from the ryot and manage his zamindari.



‘Amar Katha’ is the autobiography of____________. a) Tara Sundari OR b) Binodini Dasi

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“Amar Katha: Story of Binodini” is a documentary on the life and times of Binodini Dasi, the pioneering Bengali stage actress and the first South Asian actress to write an autobiography.

Enrich Your Learning:

Amar Katha:

  • Binodini Dasi (1863-1941) was a pioneering figure in Bengali theatre in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and worked closely with the dramatist and director Girish Chandra Ghosh (1844-1912).
  • She was one of the prime movers behind the setting up of the Star Theatre (1883) in Calcutta which became a centre for famous productions.
  • Between 1910 and 1913 she serialised her autobiography, Amar Katha (My Story). A remarkable personality, she exemplified the problem women faced in recasting their roles in society.
  • She was a professional in the city, working in multiple spheres – as an actress, institution builder and author – but the patriarchal society of the time scorned her assertive public presence.



Sects of Vaishnavism and Shaivism emerged in Hinduism, in which there was growing emphasis on the worship of a chosen deity. True OR False.

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Answer: True.

Enrich Your Learning:

The development of Mahayana Buddhism:

  • Early Buddhist teachings had given great importance to self-effort in achieving nirvana. 
  • Buddha was regarded as a human being who attained enlightenment and nirvana. Gradually the idea of a saviour emerged.
  • Simultaneously, the concept of the Bodhisatta also developed. Bodhisattas were perceived as deeply compassionate beings who accumulated merit through their efforts but used this not to attain nirvana and thereby abandon the world, but to help others. 
  • The worship of images of the Buddha and Bodhisattas became an important part of this tradition.
  • This new way of thinking was called Mahayana – literally, the “great vehicle”. Those who adopted these beliefs described the older tradition as Hinayana or the “lesser vehicle”.

The growth of Puranic Hinduism:

  • The notion of a saviour was not unique to Buddhism, it was also a part of Hinduism.
  • Vaishnavism – is a form of Hinduism within which Vishnu was worshipped as the principal deity and Shaivism is a tradition within which Shiva was regarded as the chief god.
  • In such worship the bond between the devotee and the god was visualised as one of love and devotion, or bhakti.
  • In Vaishnavism, cults developed around the various avatars or incarnations of the deity. Ten avatars were recognised within the tradition.
  • Different avatars were popular in different parts of the country. Some of the avatars were represented in sculptures. For example, Shiva was symbolised by the linga.
  • All such representations depicted a complex set of ideas about the deities and their attributes through symbols.
  • Much of what is contained in the Puranas evolved through interaction amongst people who travelled from place to place sharing ideas and beliefs.



Name the factors which control the formation of soils.

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Five basic factors control the formation of soils: (i) parent material; (ii) topography; (iii) climate; (iv) biological activity; (v) time. In fact, soil forming factors act in union and affect the action of one another.

Enrich Your Learning:

Soil-forming Factors:

Parent Material:

  • Parent material is a passive control factor in soil formation.
  • Parent materials can be any in-situor on-site weathered rock debris (residual soils) or transported deposits (transported soils).
  • Soil formation depends upon the texture (sizes of debris) and structure (disposition of individual grains/particles of debris) as well as the mineral and chemical composition of the rock debris/deposits.
  • Nature and rate of weathering and depth of weathering mantle are important considerations under parent materials.
  • There may be differences in soil over similar bedrock and dissimilar bedrocks may have similar soils above them. But when soils are very young and have not matured these show strong links.


  • Topography like parent materials is another passive control factor.
  • The influence of topography is felt through the amount of exposure of a surface covered by parent materials to sunlight and the amount of surface and sub-surface drainage over and through the parent materials.
  • Soils will be thin on steep slopes and thick over flat upland areas.
  • Over gentle slopes where erosion is slow and percolation of water is good, soil formation is very favourable.
  • Soils over flat areas may develop a thick layer of clay with good accumulation of organic matter giving the soil dark colour.
  • In middle latitudes, the south facing slopes exposed to sunlight have different conditions of vegetation and soils and the north facing slopes with cool, moist conditions have some other soils and vegetation.


  • Climate is an important active factor in soil formation.
  • The climatic elements involved in soil development are: (i) moisture in terms of its intensity, frequency and duration of precipitation – evaporation and humidity; (ii) temperature in terms of seasonal and diurnal variations.

Biological Activity:

  • Dead plants provide humus, the finely divided organic matter of the soil.
  • Some organic acids which form during humification aid in decomposing the minerals of the soil parent materials.
  • Intensity of bacterial activity shows up differences between soils of cold and warm climates.
  • Cold Climate
  • Humus accumulates in cold climates as bacterial growth is slow. With undecomposed organic matter because of low bacterial activity, layers of peat develop in sub-arctic and tundra climates.
  • Warm Climate
  • In humid tropical and equatorial climates, bacterial growth and action is intense and dead vegetation is rapidly oxidised leaving very low humus content in the soil.
  • Further, bacteria and other soil organisms take gaseous nitrogen from the air and convert it into a chemical form that can be used by plants. This process is known as nitrogen fixation.
  • Rhizobium, a type of bacteria, lives in the root nodules of leguminous plants and fixes nitrogen beneficial to the host plant.
  • The influence of large animals like ants, termites, earthworms, rodents etc., is mechanical, but, it is nevertheless important in soil formation as they rework the soil up and down.
  • In case of earthworms, as they feed on soil, the texture and chemistry of the soil that comes out of their body changes.


  • The length of time the soil forming processes operate, determines maturation of soils and profile development.
  • A soil becomes mature when all soil-forming processes act for a sufficiently long time developing a profile.
  • Soils developing from recently deposited alluvium or glacial till are considered young and they exhibit no horizons or only poorly developed horizons.
  • No specific length of time in absolute terms can be fixed for soils to develop and mature.




What is Rock Cycle?

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Rocks through interaction of heat, pressure and other erosional elements can morph or change to another form. This phenomenon of changing from one form to another is called Rock Cycle.

Enrich Your Learning:

Rock Cycle:

  • Rocks do not remain in their original form for long but may undergo transformation.
  • Rock cycle is a continuous process through which old rocks are transformed into new ones.
  • Igneous rocks are primary rocks and other rocks (sedimentary and metamorphic) form from these primary rocks. Igneous rocks can be changed into metamorphic rocks.
  • The fragments derived out of igneous and metamorphic rocks form into sedimentary rocks. Sedimentary rocks themselves can turn into fragments and the fragments can be a source for formation of sedimentary rocks.
  • The crustal rocks (igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary) once formed may be carried down into the mantle (interior of the earth) through subduction process and the same melt down due to increase in temperature in the interior and turn into molten magma, the original source for igneous rocks.



Restaurants and Retail Shops are considered under which main sector of the economy? a) Tertiary Sector OR b) Secondary Sector

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Answer: Tertiary Sector

Enrich Your Learning:

Primary sector:

  • The primary sector is sometimes known as the extraction sector – because it involves taking raw materials. These can be renewable resources, such as fish, wool and wind power.
  • It can be the use of non-renewable resources, such as oil extraction, mining for coal. It is also called agriculture and related sector.

Secondary Sector:

  • It covers activities in which natural products are changed into other forms through ways of manufacturing that associate with industrial activity. It is the next step after primary.
  • The product is not produced by nature but has to be made and therefore some process of manufacturing is essential. This could be in a factory, a workshop or at home. For example, using cotton fibre from the plant, one can spin yarn and weave cloth.
  • Since this sector gradually became associated with the different kinds of industries that came up, it is also called as industrial sector.

Tertiary sector:

  • The service sector is concerned with the intangible aspect of offering services to consumers and business.
  • It involves retail of the manufactured goods. Transport, storage, communication, banking, trade are some examples of tertiary activities. Since these activities generate services rather than goods, the tertiary sector is also called the service sector.



____________ is the longest double-tracked and electrified trans– continental railway in the world. a) Trans–Siberian Railway OR b) Trans–Canadian Railways

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Answer: Trans–Siberian Railway

Enrich Your Learning:

Trans–Continental Railways:

Trans–continental railways run across the continent and link its two ends. They were constructed for economic and political reasons to facilitate long runs in different directions. The following are the most important of these:

Trans–Siberian Railway:

  • This is a trans–siberian Railways major rail route of Russia runs from St. Petersburg in the west to Vladivostok on the Pacific Coast in the east passing through Moscow, Ufa, Novosibirsk, Irkutsk, Chita and Khabarovsk.
  • It has helped in opening up its Asian region to West European markets. It runs across the Ural Mountains Ob and Yenisei rivers Chita is an important agrocentre and Irkutsk, a fur centre.
  • There are connecting links to the south, namely, to Odessa (Ukraine), Baku on the Caspian Coast, Tashkent (Uzbekistan), Ulan Bator (Mongolia), and Shenyang (Mukden) and Beijing in China.

Trans–Canadian Railways:

  • This 7,050 km long rail-line in Canada runs from Halifax in the east to Vancouver on the Pacific Coast passing through Montreal, Ottawa, Winnipeg and Calgary.
  • It was constructed in 1886, initially as part of an agreement to make British Columbia on the west coast join the Federation of States.
  • It gained economic significance because it connected the Quebec-Montreal Industrial Region with the wheat belt of the Prairie Region and the Coniferous Forest region in the north. Thus, each of these regions became complementary to the other.
  • A loop line from Winnipeg to Thunder Bay (Lake Superior) connects this rail-line with one of the important waterways of the world.
  • This line is the economic artery of Canada. Wheat and meat are the important exports on this route.

The Union and Pacific Railway:

  • This rail-line connects New York on the Atlantic Coast to San Francisco on the Pacific Coast passing through Cleveland, Chicago, Omaha, Evans, Ogden and Sacramento.
  • The most valuable exports on this route are ores, grain, paper, chemicals and machinery.

The Australian Trans–Continental Railway:

  • This rail-line runs west-east across the southern part of the continent from Perth on the west coast, to Sydney on the east coast. passing through Kalgoorlie, Broken Hill and Port Augusta.
  • Another major north-south line connects Adelaide and Alice Spring and to be joined further to the Darwin–Birdum line.

The Orient Express:

  • This line runs from Paris to Istanbul passing through Strasbourg, Munich, Vienna, Budapest and Belgrade.
  • The journey time from London to Istanbul by this Express is now reduced to 96 hours as against 10 days by the sea-route.
  • The chief exports on this rail-route are cheese, bacon, oats, wine, fruits, and machinery.
  • There is a proposal to build a Trans–Asiatic Railway linking Istanbul with Bangkok via Iran, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and Myanmar.



According to International Labour Organisation (ILO), what are the six basic needs to approach Human Development? 

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Health, education, food, water supply, sanitation, and housing.

Enrich Your Learning:

Approaches to Human Development:

Income Approach:

  • This is one of the oldest approaches to human development.
  • Human development is seen as being linked to income.
  • The idea is that the level of income reflects the level of freedom an individual enjoys.
  • Higher the level of income, the higher is the level of human development.

Welfare Approach:

  • This approach looks at human beings as beneficiaries or targets of all development activities.
  • The approach argues for higher government expenditure on education, health, social secondary and amenities.
  • People are not participants in development but only passive recipients.
  • The government is responsible for increasing levels of human development by maximising expenditure on welfare.

Basic Needs Approach:

  • This approach was initially proposed by the International Labour Organisation (ILO).
  • Six basic needs i.e.: health, education, food, water supply, sanitation, and housing were identified.
  • The question of human choices is ignored and the emphasis is on the provision of basic needs of defined sections.

Capability Approach:

  • This approach is associated with Prof. Amartya Sen.
  • Building human capabilities in the areas of health, education and access to resources is the key to increasing human development.



How did surveys become important under the colonial administration? ​

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The practice of surveying became common practice under the colonial administration because the British believed that a country had to be properly known before it could be effectively administered.

Enrich Your Learning:

Survey become important under the colonial administration:

  • The practice of surveying became common under the colonial administration. The British believed that a country had to be properly known before it could be effectively administered.
  • By the early nineteenth century detailed surveys were being carried out to map the entire country. In the villages, revenue surveys were conducted.
  • The effort was to know the topography, the soil quality, the flora, the fauna, the local histories, and the cropping pattern – all the facts seen as necessary to know about to administer the region.
  • From the end of the nineteenth century, Census operations were held every ten years. These prepared detailed records of the number of people in all the provinces of India, noting information on castes, religions and occupation.
  • There were many other surveys– botanical surveys, zoological surveys, archaeological surveys, anthropological surveys, forest surveys.



According to Jaina teachings, the cycle of birth and rebirth is shaped through karma. True OR False.

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Answer: True.

Enrich Your Learning:

The Message of Mahavira:

  • The basic philosophy of the Jainas was already in existence in north India before the birth of Vardhamana, who came to be known as Mahavira, in the sixth century BCE.
  • According to Jaina tradition, Mahavira was preceded by 23 other teachers or tirthankaras – literally, those who guide men and women across the river of existence.
  • The most important idea in Jainism is that the entire world is animated: even stones, rocks and water have life.
  • Non-injury to living beings, especially to humans, animals, plants and insects, is central to Jaina philosophy.
  • The principle of ahimsa, emphasised within Jainism, has left its mark on Indian thinking as a whole.
  • Asceticism and penance are required to free oneself from the cycle of karma. This can be achieved only by renouncing the world; therefore, monastic existence is a necessary condition of salvation.
  • Jaina monks and nuns took five vows: to abstain from killing, stealing and lying; to observe celibacy; and to abstain from possessing property.

The spread of Jainism:

  • Jainism spread to many parts of India. Like the Buddhists, Jaina scholars produced a wealth of literature in a variety of languages – Prakrit, Sanskrit and Tamil.
  • For centuries, manuscripts of these texts were carefully preserved in libraries attached to temples.
  • Some of the earliest stone sculptures associated with religious traditions were produced by devotees of the Jaina tirthankaras, and have been recovered from several sites throughout the subcontinent.

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