NCERT Solutions for Class 12 Political Science Chapter 11 - Social and New Social Movement in India

Question 1:

Which of these statements is incorrect ?
The Chipko Movement

  1. was an environmental movement to prevent cutting down of trees.
  2. raised questions of ecological and economic exploitations.
  3. was a movement against alcoholism started by the women.
  4. demanded that local communities should have control over their natural resources.

(iii) was a movement against alcoholism started by the women.

Question 2:

Identify the reasons which led to the Chipko Movement in U.P. in early 1970s ? What was the impact of this movement ?


Chipko Movement shows that tribals are mostly dependent upon forest products for their primary needs and survival. But the forest policies and management are blind to the needs of the common people. Chipko Movement began in two or three villages of Uttarakhand when the forest department refused permission to the villages to fall ash trees for making agricultural tools. The forest department allotted the same piece of land to some sports contractor for commercial use. Thus, the villagers protested against this decision of the government. Chipko Movement (1947–77), hugging trees to prevent them from being cut down, linked the issue of environmental degradation to women’s increasing toil for fuel and fodder. This movement was started under the leadership of Chandi Prasad Bhatt and Sunderlal Bahuguna.

Major Issues Related to Chipko Movement. Major demands or major issues of the Chipko Movement are as follows:

  1. Natural resources such as land, water, forests, etc. should be under the control of local communities.
  2. Forest contracts should be given to the local people and not to the outsiders.
  3. Minimum wages of the workers working in forests should be fixed.
  4. Low cost material should be provided to smallscale industries.
  5. Women asked the government to enforce prohibition on the habit of alcoholism.

Significance of Chipko Movement.

  1. This movement to ‘hug trees’ was one of the first grassroots environment movements, which attracted national and international attention.
  2. Chipko Movement was not only a movement to save environment but it was also seen as a ‘feminist movement’ not only because of the active participation of women but also because deforestation was seen as affecting women’s life in the hills in their search for fuel and fodder.
  3. Chipko Movement was not only a movement to save environment but it had a larger social base. Women protested against drinking habit of men.
  4. The government issued a ban on felling of trees in the Himalayan region for fifteen years.
  5. Chipko movement created awareness among the women of hilly region as women became aware about their rights.
Question 3:

Some of the statements below are incorrect. Identify the incorrect statements and rewrite those with necessary correction.

  1. Social movements are hampering the functioning of India’s democracy.
  2. The main strength of social movements lies in their mass base across social sections.
  3. Social movements in India emerged because there were many issues that political parties did not address.
  1. Social movements are not hampering the functioning of India’s democracy.
  2. The main strength of social movements lies in their mass base across social sections.
  3. There were many issues emerged in India because political parties did not address the social movements.
Question 4:

The Bharatiya Kisan Union is a leading organisation highlighting the plight of farmers. What were the issues addressed by it in the nineties and to what extent were they successful ?


Describe any six factors which made the farmer’s movements run by Bharatiya Kisan Union as the most successful popular movement.


Examine the emergence, demands and success of BKU as one of the leading popular movements of India.


Though India is an Agricultural country yet the farmer’s associations came into existence quite later than trade unions, and even now their organisations are not that active and powerful. In 1977 Chaudhary Charan Singh tried to organise farmers. The Bharatiya Kisan Union was established in 1980. It is mainly active in Punjab and Western U.P. The Bharatiya Kisan Union is a leading organisation highlighting the plight of farmers.

In 1987 the BKU emerged as a spontaneous movement against increase in electricity tariff imposed by U.P. government. They sat for Dharna in front of DM’s office, led processions and also held demonstrations. The farmers rallied behind Tikait and withheld electricity bills for seven years. The state failed to take any action against the farmers for non-payment of bills because the farmers were fully involved in the movement. This movement was against the state and not against the landlords. The B.K.U. raised many economic issues.

  1. It demanded ending zonal restrictions on movement of foodgrains.
  2. Electricity rates should be reduced.
  3. Price of Sugarcane and Milk should be raised.
  4. It demanded writing off government levies payable by farmers of Punjab for provision of canals.
  5. Adequate compensation in case of naturaldisaster.
  6. The government should take the responsibility for selling the produce.

Many demands of the BKU were accepted by the government. In most of the cases government made concessions. The Bharatiya Kisan Union also familiarised the farmers with latest farming techniques, equipments, methods, etc. It inspired farmers to start small-scale agro-industries. Right from the beginning the BKU remained away from party politics and it did not align itself with any political party. Thus BKU is non-political, secular, non-violent organisation.

Question 5:

The anti-arrack movement in Andhra Pradesh drew the atttention of the country to some serious issues. What were these issues ?


In Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh men in the villages were habitual of taking alcohol, i.e. arrack. The habit of alcoholism was ruining the health of the people. Moreover, financial conditions of the families were also ruined. Women and childern were the worst sufferers of these ill-effects of alcohol. Women in Nellore district came together and they started antiarrack movement. Many wine shops were closed in Nellore. The arrack auctions in Nellore district were postponed 17 times. This movement in Nellore district gradually spread all over the state. In 1992 women took out a big procession in Hyderabad to mark protest against the sale of arrack. The slogan of anti-arrack movement was ‘Prohibition on the sale of arrack.’ Anti-arrack movement of Andhra Pradesh drew the attention of the country to some serious issues such as domestic violence, custom of dowry, sexual abuse at work and public places, etc.

Question 6:

Would you consider the anti-arrack movement as a women’s movement ? Why ?


Describe the issues associated with the anti-arrack movements in Andhra Pradesh which drew the attention of the entire country.


Anti-arrack movement in Andhra Pradesh was definitely a movement of women. In Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh women came together in spontaneous local initiatives to protest against arrack (local alcohol) and forced closure of wine shop. The news spread very fast and women of about 5000 villages got inspired and met together in meetings, passed resolution for complete prohibition and sent these resolutions to the District Collector and Higher autorities. Due to women’s protests, the arrack auctions in Nellore district were postponed 17 times. In 1992 women took out a big procession in Hyderabad to protest against the sale of ‘arrack’. Women also raised the issue of domestic violence : Anti-arrack movement became a part of the women’s movement.

Question 7:

Why did the Narmada Bachao Aandolan oppose the dam projects in the Narmada Valley ?


What is Sardar Sarovar Project ? Which benefits are expected to be if the project becomes successful ? Also state the issues of relocation and rehabilitation associated with it.


In early eighties development project was launched in the Narmada Valley of Central India. The project consisted of 30 big dams, 135 medium sized and about 3000 small dams to be constructed on the Narmanda. Sardar Sarovar Project in Gujarat and Narmada Sagar project in Madhaya Pradesh were very big and important projects. Narmada Bachao Aandolan was started in 1988–89. Narmada Bachao Aandolan opposes the dam projects bacause the constructions of the dam needed 245 villages to get submerged. It also required about two and a half lakh people from these villages. The movement demanded that the people who are affected directly or indirectly by the projects should be properly rehabilitated. The NBA also demanded participation of local people in decision-making and should also have effective control over natural resources like water, land and forests. Ultimately the government and the judiciary accepted the right to rehabilitation. A comprehensive National Rehabilitation Policy was formed by the government in 2003.

Question 8:

Do movements and protest in a country strengthen democracy ? Justify your answer with examples.


When any movement is actively supported by a large section of the society, it is called as a popular movement. It can be party based or non-party based. Popular movements are strengthening democracy in the following ways:

  1. Helpful to Understand Democratic Politics. The history of popular movements helps us to understand better the nature of democratic politics. Popular movements come up to rectify some problems in the functioning of party politics and should be seen as an integral part of our democratic politics.
  2. Effective Representation to Different Groups. Popular movements represent new social groups whose economic and social grievances were not redressed in the realm of electoral politics. Popular movements ensured effective representation of different groups and associations.
  3. Mass Movements raised Legitimate demands of the People. Generally popular movements have raised legitimate demands of the people and have involved greater participation of masses. Mainly workers, farmers and poor people participate in these popular movements.
  4. Govt. is compelled to accept Genuine Demands. Many times even the most genuine demands of the people are not accepted by the government. Then it is through popular movements that government is compelled to accept the demands of disadvantaged social groups.
  5. Popular movement includes various diemensions of public welfare.
  6. Popular movement spread awareness among peoples.
Question 9:

What issues did the Dalit Panthers address ?


Who were Dalit Panthers ? Describe their main activities.


In Indian society Dalit has become against casteism. Here the word ‘Dalit’ clearly indicates backward and lower castes, whereas the fact is that no particular caste or class is included in Dalit class. All backward classes, Scheduled castes and Scheduled tribes are included in Dalit.

In the 20th century Mahatma Gandhi worked in the colonies of ‘Harijans’ to improve the social, economic and political conditions of the Dalit. Dr. B.R. Ambedkar played a very important role for the improvemrnt of the Dalits. When in 1971 Indian Republican Party was disintegrating in Maharashtra, another organisation called Dalit Panther emerged over there under the leadership of Raja Dhale and Namdev Dhasal. Dalit Panthers was a militant organisation of educated Dalit youths. Babu Rao Bagul and E.P. Soukamble gave direction to Dalit policies through their poems, literature and biographies. Dalit Panthers openly challenged casteism and Brahmanism. Following reasons were responsible for the rise of Dalit Panthers Movement :

1. Social and economic reasons are responsible for the rise of Dalit Panthers movement.

According to Abhaya Dubey, Dalit Panthers movement was inspired by Dalit literature that demanded Dalit rights.

The rising unemployment in Maharashtra was another reason for the origin of Dalit Panthers. Main reason of the rise of Dalit Panthers was increasing atrocities on the Dalits.

Dalit Panthers were convinced that no political party was a genuine champion of the Dalits as they remained either indifferent to their problems or adopted postures to get Dalit votes.

Policy and Programmers of Dalit Panthers. Dalit panthers raised the following issues for the welfare of Dalit.

  1. The ‘Panther’ aim was to unite the Dalit and to bring them into their fold.
  2. According to the manifesto of Dalit Panthers, ‘Dalit’ word includes Scheduled Castes and Tribes, new Buddhists, economically backward workers, women, landless, poor peasants and all those persons who were being exploitated.
  3. Accoding to Dalit Panthers manifesto main problems of Dalit are lack of food, water, shelter, jobs, land and their unequal social status and atrocities on them.
  4. According to Dalit Panthers their problem could be solved by acquiring economic and political power.
  5. The liberation of Scheduled Caste is possible only with a basic change in the system through a revolution.
  6. The Dalit Panthers opposed the anti-Dalit policies of the government.
  7. Namdev and Dhale formulated a programme for the betterment of Dalits in February 1974 and this programme is known as ‘class struggle’.
  8. Dalit Panthers described Shiv Sena as fascist Hindu organisation.
  9. Dalit Panthers had concentrated on the problems of the Dalit women, land disputes and retaliating the Shiv Sena activities.
  10. Dalit Panthers demanded Dalitstan. It was a demand for separate village settlements of Dalits, where there could be no exploitation by superior people.
  11. Dalit Panthers have full faith in Constitutional methods.

Conclusion. No doubt Dalit Panthers played very important role for the betterment of Dalit in Maharashtra. But Dalit Panthers did not succeed in achieving their aims because Dalit Panthers disintegrated in a short period. Some leaders left the Dalit Panthers and joined left movement and some leaders joined Congress.

Question 10:

Read the passage and answer questions below :

.............nearly all new social movements have emerged as corrective to new maladies............. environmental degradation, violation of the status of women, destruction of tribal cultures and the undermining of human rights...........none of which are in and by themselves transformative of the social order. They are in that way quite different from revolutionary ideologies of the past. But their weakness lies in their being so heavily fragmented........... a large part of the space occupied by the new social movements seen to be suffering from...........various characteristics which have prevented them from being relevant to the truly oppressed and the poor in the form of a solid unified movement of the people. They are too fragmented, reactive and hocish, providing no comprehensive framework of basic social change. Their being anti this or that (anti-west, anti-capitalist, anti-development, etc.) does not make them any more coherent any more relevant to oppressed and peripheralized community....................Rajni Kothari.

  1. What is the difference between new social movements and revolutionary ideologies ?
  2. What according to the author are the limitations of social movements ?
  3. If social movements address specific issues, would you say that they are fragmented or that they are more focused ? Give reasons for your answer by giving examples.
  1. Almost all new social movements have emerged as corrective to new maladies, i.e. environmental degradation, violation of the status of women, destruction of tribal culture and undermining of human rights – none of which are in and by themselves transformation of the social order. They are in that way quite different from revolutionary ideologies of the past.
  2. Social movements seem to be suffering from various characteristics which have prevented them from being relevant to the truly opperessed and the poor in the form of a solid unified movement of the people.
  3. If social movements address specific issues, they are fragmented because they are providing no comprehensive framework of basic social change.