Topic outline

    • Forest Society and Colonialism

      Q23. Why did the British feel the locals were destroying forests?
      Why did the British feel that the Indian people were destroying forests?

      Ans. The British were worried that the use of forests by local people and the reckless felling of trees by traders would destroy forests.


      Q24. Mention the impact of the disappearing oak forest in England.

      Ans. By the early nineteenth century, oak forests in England were disappearing. This created a problem of timber supply for the Royal Navy.


      Q25. How was the message given to the villagers to rebel against the British government?

      Ans. In 1910, mango boughs, a lump of earth, chillies and arrows, began circulating between villages. These were actually messages inviting villagers to rebel against the British.


      Q26. What did the World Bank propose in 1970?

      Ans. In the 1970s, the World Bank proposed that 4,600 hectares of natural sal forest should be replaced by tropical pine to provide pulp for the paper industry.


      Q27. Who were recruited to work on tea plantations in Assam?
      Which tribes of India were recruited to work on tea plantation?

      Ans. In Assam, both men and women from forest communities like Santhals and Oraons from Jharkhand, and Gonds from Chhattisgarh were recruited to work on tea plantations.


      Q28. What do you mean by devsari, dand or man?

      Ans. If people from a Bastar village want to take some wood from the forests of another village, they pay a small fee called devsari, dand or man in exchange.


      Q29. What did the large animals signify in Britishers’ view?
      How did the British view large animals?

      Ans. The British saw large animals as signs of a wild, primitive and savage society. They believed that by killing dangerous animals the British would civilise India. 


      Q30. What were the results of the Bastar rebellion?

      Ans. In a major victory for the rebels, work on reservation was temporarily suspended, and the area to be reserved was reduced to roughly half of that planned before 1910.

      Q31. Name the two leaders of the forest communities who rebelled against the British.

      Ans. Siddhu and Kanu in the Santhal Parganas 

      Birsa Munda of Chhotanagpur 

      Alluri Sitarama Raju of Andhra Pradesh (any two)


      Q32. How was increasing population responsible for deforestation?

      Ans. As population increased over the centuries and the demand for food went up, peasants extended the boundaries of cultivation, clearing forests and breaking new land.


      Q33. Why was wood needed for railways?
      How did Railways create new demand for wood?

      Ans. The spread of railways from the 1850s created a new demand. To run locomotives, wood was needed as fuel, and to lay railway lines sleepers were essential to hold the tracks together.


      Q34. What policy did the Dutch follow during war?
      Explain why did the Dutch adopt 'scorched earth' policy during the war?

      Ans. In Java, just before the Japanese occupied the region, the Dutch followed a scorched earth policy, destroying sawmills, and burning huge piles of giant teak logs so that they would not fall into Japanese hands.


      Q35. How did some people benefit from the laws of forest department?
      How did some people benefit from the new forest rules?

      Ans. Some people benefited from the new opportunities that had opened up in trade. Many communities left their traditional occupations and started trading in forest products. This happened not only in India but across the world.


      Q36. Why were the villagers punished by colonial government in Java?

      Ans. The Dutch enacted forest laws in Java, restricting villagers access to forests. Villagers were punished for grazing cattle in young stands, transporting wood without a permit, or travelling on forest roads with horse carts or cattle.


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