ISC Political Science Previous Year Question Paper 2016 Solved for Class 12
Maximum Marks: 80
Time allowed: Three hours
- Candidates are allowed additional 15 minutes for only reading the paper. They must NOT start writing during this time.
- Answer Question 1 (Compulsory) from Part I and five questions from Part II, choosing two questions from Section A, two questions from Section B and one question from either Section A or Section B.
- The intended marks for questions or parts of questions are given in brackets [ ].
Answer briefly each of the questions (i) to (x): [10 x 2]
(i) On what basis are the states classified as unitary and federal ?
(ii) Differentiate between an enacted constitution and an evolved constitution.
(iii) Explain briefly, the First-Past-the-Post system of election.
(iv) What are the powers enjoyed exclusively by the Rajya Sabha ?
(v) Why are the civil servants called politically neutral members of the executive ?
(vi) What is the composition of the Supreme Court of India and the Supreme Court of the United States of America ?
(vii) Which fundamental right enables a person to petition the courts for issuance of writs ?
(viii) Give any two differences between the cabinet systems of India and the United States of America.
(ix) Briefly explain the composition of the Gram Panchayat.
(x) Mention any two forms of political violence in India.
(i) The classification of states is done on the basis of relations between the Center and State government. In case of Unitary government all powers are vested with the Central government. Whereas in case of the federal government, the power is divided between the Center and the State by a Constitution.
(ii) An Enacted Constitution is a man-made constitution. It is made, enacted and adopted by an assembly or council called a Constituent Assembly or Constitutional Council. It is duly passed after a thorough discussion over its objectives, principles and provisions. It is written in the form of a book or as a series of documents and in a systematic and formal manner. The Constitutions of India the USA, Japan, China are enacted constitutions.
An evolved constitution is one which is not made at any time by any assembly of persons or an institution. Evolved Constitutions is the product of historical evolution and of political needs and practical wisdom of the people. The Constitution of Great Britain presents a key example of an evolved constitution
(iii) The First-Past-The-Post system is the simplest form of majority system, using single member districts and candidate- centered voting. The voter is presented with the names of the nominated candidates and votes by choosing only one, of them. The winning candidate is simply the person who wins the most votes. E.g. India, and the United States.
(iv) Under Article 67, a resolution seeking the removal of the Vice-President can originate only in the Rajya Sabha. After the Rajya Sabha passes such a resolution by a majority of the members present of the House, it goes for approval of the Lok Sabha.
Any resolution seeking creation of one or more All-India Services, including All-India Judicial Services, if such is necessary in the national interest, can only be initiated in the Rajya Sabha. Only after the Rajya Sabha passes a resolution to this effect by a special majority, i.e., Two-thirds of the members present and voting, can the Parliament legislate on this. A resolution seeking legislation on any subject of the State List can only originate in the Rajya Sabha, if it thinks that such is necessary or in the national interest.
(v) The civil servants are called politically neutral members of the executive because they cannot join political parties and participate in political movements. They are not affected by the political changes which keep on coming in the political executive. Whichever party may come to power and make the government, the civil servants remain politically neutral and carry out their assigned departmental roles impartially and faithfully.
(vi) The Constitution of India provided for a Supreme Court with a Chief Justice and not more than 25 judges who are appointed by the President of India with consultation of the Chief Justice of India. The Supreme Court consists of the Chief Justice of the United States and such number of Associate Justices as may be fixed by Congress. The number of Associate Justices is currently fixed at eight. Power to nominate the Justices is vested in the President of the United States and appointments are made with the advice and consent of the Senate.
(vii) Right to Constitutional Remedies enables a person petition the Supreme Court for issuance of writs.
(viii) India has a system of Parliamentary government while it is Presidential system in the USA. In case of a parliamentary system the Cabinet collectively decides the government’s direction, especially in regard to legislation passed by the parliament. In countries with a presidential system, such as the United States, the Cabinet plays a primary role as an official advisory council to the head of government. In a parliamentary system, the president will almost always follow this advice, whereas in a presidential system, a president who is also head of government and political leader may depart from the Cabinet’s advice if he does not agree with it.
(ix) Gram Panchayat is the organization of elected panehas by the members of Gram Sabha of the village. It is a self-government organization. The number of members in a Gram Panchayat depends upon the population of the village which may vary from state to state .Generally, the number of elected panehas in a Gram Panchayat varies between seven and seventeen members. There is provision for reservation of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Women candidates. The head of the Panchayat is known as ‘Sarpanch’.
(x) Two forms of political violence in India are genocide and war.
Answer any three questions
(a) What is meant by a liberal democratic state ? Discuss any four features of such a state. 
(b) Compare the federal systems of the United States of America and India. 
(a) A Liberal democratic state is based on the ideology of a representative democracy with liberal outlook that focuses special attention on minorities and weaker sections. This outlook can be seen in the Indian Constitution.
- It is characterized by fair, free and competitive elections between multiple distinct political parties,
- Powers are separated into different branches of government,
- Equal protection of human rights, civil rights, civil liberties, and political freedom for all people.
- Liberal democracies often draw upon a constitution, either formally written or unmodified, to delineate the powers of
(b) In order to compare the federal form of government in India and US we need to discuss both the similarities and differences between the two countries which are as follows-
Written Constitution : Both US and India have a written constitution based on which the federal political structure has been set up and both federal governments are functioning. Both constitutions have provisions for amending the constitution to meet the growing social, political and economic needs and demands of their respective countries.
Bill of Rights and Fundamental Rights : The US constitution has ensured the fundamental rights of its citizens through ‘The Bill of Rights’. The Indian Constitution has guaranteed the fundamental rights of the people through articles 14 to 35 in Part III.
Supremacy of the Federal or Union Government : In both the countries the law enacted by the Federal or Union Government will have over-riding effect over the law enacted by the states on the same subject. Thus Federal or Union Government is supreme in the present federal structure.
Separation of Powers : Both US and Indian Constitutions have three basic divisions in their federal set up known as executive, legislature and judiciary. The executive governs the country, the legislature enacts laws and the judiciary administers justice. President of US is the chief executive head of US, whereas the Union cabinet headed by the Prime Minister is the real chief executive body in India. Both US and India have a bicameral legislature. US ‘ legislature has an upper and lower house known as the House of Senate and the House of Representatives respectively and the Indian Parliament has Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha as its Lower and Upper house respectively. Both US and India have a well organized judiciary,
having the Supreme Court or the Federal Court as the apex court and a number of other courts in various states to administer original and appellate jurisdictions.
The Constitution of US is very rigid in comparison to Indian Constitution : The constitution of US is very brief and rigid running into only a few pages, whereas the constitution of India is very voluminous containing as many as 25 parts, 12 schedules and 448 Articles. Since the US constitution is very rigid, the provisions meant for amending the constitution are also very rigid and more formal. Therefore, it is easy to amend the Indian Constitution, since it involves four different types of procedures which are comparatively easy than the amending procedure of the US Constitution.
US has the Presidential Form of Government, India has the Parliamentary Form of Government: In the US, the President is the head of the state while In India, the President is only a nominal head. The Indian cabinet and the Prime Minister are collectively and directly responsible and answerable to the parliament and indirectly to the people, whereas, the US President has constitutional obligations and duties and of course answerable to the people.
Differences between the Legislatures of US and India : In India, the lower house or the Lok Sabha is more powerful and its members are directly elected by the people and the members of the Upper house or Rajya Sabha are indirectly elected every two years. The Lok Sabha members represent their constituencies on the basis of their population strength; In the US, the House of Representatives are elected on the basis of the population strength of a state, but irrespective of the size of the state or its population.
(a) Discuss briefly three kinds of Minority Representation. 
(b) Explain what is meant by a bi-party system. Examine any four merits of this system. 
(a) Three kinds of Minority Representation are: Cumulative Vote System : Involves with member constituencies. A voter has as many votes as the number of seats. A voter has the right to the option of either giving his votes to all, to a few or even to concentrate all his votes just for one candidate. A well organised minority has an opportunity to get at least one of its representatives elected by cumulating all its votes in favor of its own candidate.
Limited Vote System : Involves multi-member constituencies : Voter has certain number of votes which is less than the number of seats to be filled. This system acts as a check on the monopolization of representation in a constituency by a single political body and helps minority to get at least one seat.
Communal Representation : This entails Separate electorate for separate communities. A second method is reservation of seats in joint electorate : the voter may cast votes for the candidates of communities other than their own. But in deciding the result, a member of community who gets the highest number of votes among candidates of that community will be elected.
(b) Bi-party system means there are only two major parties and the rest of the parties are less important.
Stable Government : The Government is more stable in a bi-party system, because the party which has a majority in the legislature forms the Government and the other party acts as opposition.
Direct Election of the Government : In this system the Government is elected by the people directly. As the voters know the party in whose favor they are casting their votes. Thus, the people vote for the party whom they wish to form a Government.
It Ensures A Strong Government and Continuity of Policy : Because of the stability of the Government in a bi-party system, it is strong and it can pursue good policy continuously.
Responsibility for the Failure and Short-comings of the Government Easily Located in Their system : In a bi-party system, the Government is in the hands of one party, and thus it is responsible for the reputation of the government
(a) Discuss three disadvantages of a unicameral legislature. 
(b) Explain why the United States Senate is considered to be the most powerful second chamber in the world. 
(a) Unicameral system of parliament is the practice of having one legislative or parliamentary house. This system typically exists in small and homogeneous unitary states. Examples of countries that exercise unicameral system include the People’s Republic of China.
If there is only one house, then the house in course of time may become arrogant. It may act arbitrarily and become autocratic.
Modem states are complex societies. They require more laws of complex matters to be made. A single house cannot give adequate time for thorough discussion as to the making of those complex laws. A second chamber would reduce the burden of a single chamber considerably.
Unicameralism does not provide any opportunity for revision of bills. The single chamber may pass have and ill considered bills. It may be swayed away by emotion and passion.
(b) The U.S. Senate is considered to be the most powerful second chamber in the World for the following reasons.
It is the only legislative house which enjoys direct executive powers. It shares with the President the power of making top ranking appointments and through this privilege it controls the internal administration of the Federal government.
The Membership of the Senate is small but has a long tenure of 6 years. Thus the Senators are not worried about their election and can do full justice to the policy and programmes of the Party.
The Senate enjoys equal powers in legislative and financial spheres. In India, England etc., the upper house is given lesser authority than the Lower house in the spheres of legislation. But in the US both the Senate and the House of Representatives enjoy equal powers in case of ordinary and financial legislation.
(a) Explain three legislative powers of the President of the United States of America. 
(b) we have made his position one of authority and dignity. The constitution wants to create neither a real executive nor a mere figurehead. ” (Jawaharlal Nehru) 
Discuss the constitutional position of the Indian President in the tight of this statement.
(a) The Legislative powers of the U.S. president are as follows :
The president can veto any bill passed by Congress and, unless two-thirds in each house vote to over-ride the veto, the bill does not become law.
When signing a bill the president can also issue a signing statement that expresses his opinion on the constitutionality of a bill’s provisions that intrude on executive power. He may even declare them unenforceable.
The president may propose a legislation, he or she believes is necessary. If Congress should adjourn without acting on those proposals, the president has the power to call it into special session.
(b) The President of India has been given wide and far-reaching powers which he enjoys both during normal and emergency times. But after the passing if the Constitution Forty-Second (1976) and Forty-Fourth (1978) Amendment Acts, the President of our Republic has become a Constitutional figurehead and nothing beyond that.
Today, President’s position is one of great authority and dignity, but at the same time strictly constitutional. Thus, the President is bound in every case to act on the advice of his Prime Minister and other Ministers who are responsible to the Lok Sabha and responsive to the public opinion. The powers really reside in the Ministry and the Parliament and not in the President as such. He has no discretion in our Parliamentary system of government.
The Supreme Court through various decisions has upheld the position that the President is a constitutional head and he is as much bound by the advice of his Ministers during emergency as during normal times. For example, the President can declare a proclamation of the National Emergency (Article 352) only after receiving a written communication of the decision of the Union Cabinet. If the President abuses his powers, he can be removed from office by a process of impeachment.
However the President is not a mere figure-head. Unlike the British Monarchy which is hereditary, the President of our Republic is an elected Head of the State. In our coalition politics, there are some grey areas where the President may still have to use his own judgment and wisdom. These are :
- Appointment of the Prime Minister,
- Dismissal of the Union Ministry,
- Dissolution of the Lok Sabha, and,
- Seeking information on all matters of administration and legislation from the Prime Minister etc.
(a) Critically evaluate the principles of Judicial Review, with reference to India. 
(b) How is judicial independence ensured in the Constitution of the United States of America ? 
(a) Judicial Review refers to the power of the judiciary to interpret the constitution and to declare any such law or order of the legislature and executive null and void, if it finds them in conflict the Constitution of India :
The critics describe Judicial Review as an undemocratic system. It empowers the court to decide the fate of the laws passed by the legislature, which represent the sovereign-will of the people.
The Constitution of India does not clearly describe the system of Judicial Review. It rests upon the basis of several articles of the Constitution.
When a law is struck down by the Supreme Court as unconstitutional, the decision becomes effective from the date on which the judgement is delivered. Now a law can face Judicial Review only when a question of its consti-tutionality arises in any case being heard by the Supreme Court. Such a case can come before the Supreme Court after 5 or 10 or more years after the enforcement of that law. As such when the Court rejects it as unconstitutional, it creates administrative problems. A Judicial Review decision creates more problems than it solves.
Several critics regard the Judicial Review system as a reactionary system. They hold that while determining the constitutional validity of a law, the Supreme Court often adopts a legalistic and conservative approach. It can reject progressive laws enacted by the legislature.
Judicial Review is a source of delay and inefficiency.
The critics further argue that the Judicial Review can make the Parliament irresponsible as it can decide to depend upon the Supreme Court for determining the constitutionality/ reasonableness of a law passed by it.
(b) Judicial independence is ensured in the Constitution of the United States of America in the following ways :
The federal judges may be removed only by impeachment and conviction of treason, bribery, or other high crimes Judicial impeachments are conducted by the House of Representatives and require conviction by the Senate. They are very rare. The process is deliberately difficult, to guard against judges being impeached for political reasons.
Article III of the Constitution further ensures that compensation for federal judges “shall not be diminished during their continuance in office.” Neither Congress nor public opinion can “punish” a judge for an unpopular decision by threatening his paycheck. With an assured salary and permanent tenure in a respected office, judges have no real incentive to abuse authority so they are much more likely to discharge their duties faithfully.
Judicial independence is also enhanced by the selection process for federal judges. Federal judges are appointed by the president when vacancies occur. They must be confirmed by a majority vote in the Senate before taking office. Presidential appointments of judges leave a visible and important legacy, so presidents carefully consider those whom they select based on certain criteria presidents reputation, judicial record, experience, ideology, loyalty, etc.
Section — B
Answer any two questions
(a) Discuss the importance of the Preamble to the Indian Constitution. 
(b) Briefly discuss the Directive Principles of the Indian Constitution. How are these principles implemented ? 
(a) The Preamble to a Constitution embodies the fundamental values and the philosophy, on which the Constitution is based. The philosophy of the Indian Constitution is reflected in the Preamble.
The term ‘sovereign’ states that India is an independent State and it is not subject to control by any external power or authority though it is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. The word ‘Republic’ means India is neither a monarchy nor an oligarchy. We have an elected President instead of a king at the head of our State. The preamble declares that the India is Republic and shall be a . democratic in the representative form. The ultimate power remains in the electorate comprising the entire adult population. T o emphasize these values the Constitution framers have resorted to the use of the con-cepts like justice, liberty, equality and fraternity.
Justice-social, economic and political to be secured through the provisions of Fundamental Rights. The Directive Principles of State Policy ensures that Liberty is guaranteed to the individuals through the provision of Fundamental Rights, which are enforceable in the court of law. The Preamble secures to all citizens equality of States and opportunity in civic, political. The unity and integrity of the nation is sought to secured by the use of the word ‘Fraternity’ in the Preamble and by the provisions of fundamental duties and single citizenship in the Constitution. The use of these words in the Preamble shows, it embodies the basic philosophy and fundamental values on which the Constitution is based. It very well reflects the dreams and aspirations of the founding fathers of the Constitution.
(b) The Directive Principles of State Policy is contained in Part IV, Articles 36-51 of the Indian constitution. The Directive principles are broad directives given to the state in accordance with which the legislative and executive powers of the state are to be exercised.
Socialist and Economic Principles : The socialist and economic principles always aim to shape our country into a Welfare State. The State shall strive to minimize the inequalities in income and try to eliminate inequalities in status, facilities and opportunities by directing the following policies.
- adequate means of livelihood for all citizen irrespective of men and women equally.
- equal distribution of wealth and resources among all classes.
- equal pay for equal work for both men and women.
- just and humane conditions of work, a decent standard of living, full employment, leisure and social and cultural opportunities.
- protection of children, youth against exploitation and against moral and material abandonment.
- provision of work and compulsory education for all people, relief in case of unemployment, old age, sickness and disability and other cases of undeserved want.
- protection of adult and child labor.
Gandhian Principles : Our constitution framers wanted to implement the Gandhian principles for which the State shall take the following steps :
- to organize village panchayats and endow them with power and authority to enable them to function as unit of self-government.
- to promote cottage industries and village industries on an individual or co-operative basis in rural areas.
- to prohibit consumption of intoxicating and injurious drinks and drugs.
- to promote educational and economic interests of the weaker sections of the people particularly SC’s, ST’s to establish social justice and equity.
- to organize agricultural and animal husbandry on modem and scientific lines.
- to prohibit the slaughter of cows and other useful cattle.
- to protect and improve environment and safeguard the forests and wild life of the country.
- to protect, preserve and maintain places of national historical importance.
- to separate the judiciary from the executive.
3. International Principles : Principles enjoined in Article 51 under international principles are some provisions to the State relating to ensure international peace and security. The State shall attempt:
- to promote international peace and security;
- to maintain just and honorable relations between nations;
- to foster respect for international law and treaty obligations;
- to encourage settlement of international disputes by arbitration.
The State has made and is making many efforts to implement the Directive Principles. The Programme of Universalisation of Elementary Education and the five-year plans has been accorded the highest priority in order to provide free education to all children up to the age of 14 years. Welfare schemes for the weaker sections are being implemented both by the Central and State Governments. The government provides free textbooks to students belonging to scheduled castes or scheduled tribes.
Several Land Reform Acts were enacted to provide ownership rights to poor farmers. The Minimum Wages Act of 1948 empowers government to fix minimum wages for employees engaged in various employments. The Consumer Protection Act of 1986 provides for the better protection of consumers. The Equal Remuneration Act of 1976, provides for equal pay for equal work for both men and women. The Sampoorna Grameen Rozgar Yojana was launched in 2001 to attain the objective of gainful employment for the rural poor. Panchayati Raj now covers almost all states and Union territories. India’s Foreign Policy has also to some .
(a) Explain the main features of the 73rd Amendment to the Indian Constitution, relating to Panchayati Raj institutions. 
(b) Briefly explain the composition and tenure of a Municipal Corporation. 
(a) This amendment implements the article 40 of the Directive Principles of State Policy which says that ‘State shall take steps to organise village panchayats and endow them with such powers and authority as may be necessary to enable them to function as units of selfgovernment’. The Act gives a Constitutional status to the Panchayati Raj institutions. The State Governments are under the Constitutional obligation to adopt the new Panchayati Raj System in accordance with the provisions of the Act.
Features Of The Panchayati Raj Institution:
The Act provides for a three-tier system of the Panchayati Raj in the States, Panchayat means an institution of local self-Govemment for rural areas. Gram Sabha, The Act provides for a Gram Sabha as the foundation of the Panchayati Rai System. It is a body consisting of persons registered in the electoral rolls of the village comprised within the area of the Panchayat at the village level. It is a village Assembly consisting of all the registered voters in the area of a Panchayat. It shall exercise such powers and perform such functions at the village level as determined by the State Legislature .
Duration of Panchayats : The Act provided for a five-year term of office to the Panchayat at every level. The Act provided for the reservation of seats for the Scheduled Castes and the Schedules Tribes in every Panchayat. The Act provides for the reservation of not less than one-third of the total number of seats for women.
The State Legislature endows the Panchayats with such powers and authority with respect to preparation of plans for economic develop¬ment and social justice The superintendence, direction and control of the preparation of electoral rolls and the conduct of all elections to the Panchayats shall be vested in the State Election Commission.
(b) The urban local government which works for the development of any Metropolitan City with a population of more that! one million is known as the Municipal Corporation in India. The members of the Municipal Corporation are directly elected by the people and are called Councilors. The Municipal Corporation consists of a committee which includes a Mayor with Councilors. The Mayor heads the Municipal Corporation. The corporation remains under the charge of Municipal Commissioner. Each Municipal Corporation includes the following categories of members.
Directly elected members from the area of Municipal Corporation.The strength of the directly elected members depends upon the size of the population of the urban area,
Members of State Legislative Assembly, who represent the area of Municipal Corporation. Some reserva-tion of seats is there in every Municipal Corporation for
- Scheduled Castes,
- Back ward Classes and
The ratio of seats reserved for Scheduled Castes is in proportion to the total population of Scheduled Castes in the Municipal Corporation area. In every Municipal Corporation, two seats are . reserved for Backward Classes. At least 1/3 of the seats reserved for Scheduled Castes are reserved for women belonging to Scheduled Castes. At least 1/3 of the seats to be filled by direct election in each Municipal Corporation are reserved for women (including the seats reserved for Women belonging to Scheduled . Castes).
Every Municipal Corporation has a term of 5 years and begins from the date of the first meeting. Elections take place after the expiry of the year’s term. If in the opinion of the government, a Municipal Corporation is not competent to perform its duties or persistently makes mistakes in the performance of duties imposed on it or exceeds any of its powers, the Government can dissolve such a Corporation before the expiry of its term. After dissolution of a Municipal Corporation a new corporation has to be elected and constituted within six months.
(a) Briefly examine the effects of communalism in India. 
(b) Discuss briefly four causes of regionalism in India. 
(a) Communalism may be defined as a belief that people who follow the same religion have common secular same political, economic and social interests. So, here socio-political communalities arises. These common secular interests of one religion are dissimilar and divergent from the interests of the follower of another religion .The interests of the follower of the different religion or of different ‘communities’ are seen to be completely incompatible, antagonist and hostile .The effects of communalism are as follows :
- Communalism tends to separate people on the basis of religion, language, territories and ethnic origins.
- It leads to communal riots and curfew situations.
- Communalism results in terrorist activi-ties.
- A communal thought always tends to establish political dominance over particular religious community.
- The country weakens when political parties are formed and political activities are conducted on the communal lines. One of the’ most negative impacts of commu-nalism is riots, violence and homicides.
(b) The Geographical Factors : Indian has great diversity in terms of its relief features. The resources.Industries, soil, irrigation etc., are not similar and therefore they also cause differences among the people.
Political Factors : The administrative policies and decisions as well as the developmental plans taken at the national level may not satisfy all people of the country and these people, who remain dissatisfied, may feel that their interest are not properly safeguarded and may result in regional feeling.
Economic Factors : In the present times, uneven developments in different parts of the country is a prime reason for regionalism. There are certain regions in the country where industrial development, educational and health facilities, communication-net work agricultural development has made sufficient progress as compared to others. Thus the feeling of regionalism develops due to negligence of the backward areas. Language culture, customs etc., these factors have played major role in creating the feelings of regionalism, especially among illiterates or less educated people.