Power Sharing Class 10 Civics Chapter 1 Extra Questions and Answers

CBSE Class 10 Civics Chapter 1 Power Sharing Extra Questions and Answers is available here. Students can learn and download PDF of these questions for free. These extra questions and answers are prepared by our expert teachers as per the latest NCERT textbook and guidelines. Learning these questions will help you to score excellent marks in the board exams.

Power Sharing Class 10 Extra Questions Civics Chapter 1

Very Short Answer Type Questions (1 Marks)

1.What do you mean by the word ethnic?

Answer: A social division based on shared culture. People belonging to the same ethnic group believe in their common descent because of similarities of physical type or of culture or both.

2.Which ethnic group in Belgium has the largest population?
Answer: Flemish.

3.‘The tension between Dutch-speaking and French-speaking communities was more acute in Brussels’. Give reason.

Answer: The minority French-speaking community was relatively rich and powerful. So the Dutch speaking community, who got the benefit of economic development and education much later showed the resentment between the Dutch-speaking and the French-speaking communities.

4.Which are the most important social groups of Sri Lanka?
Answer: (i) Sinhala speaking (ii) Tamil speaking

5. Which ethnic group is in majority in Sri Lanka?
Answer: Sinhala

6.Name the two sub groups of Tamils in Sri Lanka. [CBSE 2014]
Answer: (i) Sri Lankan Tamils (ii) Indian Tamils

7. When did Sri Lanka emerge as an independent nation? [CBSE Sep. 2010, 11]
Answer: 1948

8.What is a Civil War?
Answer: It is a violent conflict between the opposing groups within a country, for example the conflict between Sinhalese and Indian Tamils in Sri Lanka.

9. Name the ethnic group of Sri Lanka which were involved in a Civil War.
Answer: (i) Sri Lankan Tamils or the Sinhalese (ii) Indian Tamils

10. What is majoritarianism? Name a country which has lost peace due to this. 

Answer: A belief that the majority community should be able to rule a country in whichever way it wants, by disregarding the wishes and needs of the minority. Sri Lanka.

11. Power shared among different organs of government is known as horizontal distribution of power. Give reason.

Answer: Because it allows different organs of government placed at the same level to exercise different powers.

12. State one prudential reason and one moral reason for power sharing from the Indian content.
Answer: (i) India is a multicultural society.
(ii) India is a democratic country.

13. What is different between prudential and moral reasons for power sharing?
Answer: Prudential reasons stress that power sharing will bring out better outcomes, whereas moral reasons emphasis the very act of power sharing as valuable.

14. Apart from the Central and the State Government, there is a third kind of government in Belgium. Which is that third kind of government?
Answer: Community government.

15. What is the basic principle of democracy?
Answer: The basic principle of democracy is that people are the source of all political power.

16. For a long time it was believed that all power of government must reside in one person or group of persons located at one place. Give reason.
Answer: It was felt that if the power to decide is dispersed, it would not be possible to take quick decisions.

17. What is a community government?

Answer: A community government is one in which different social groups are given the power to handle the affairs related to their communities. They are expected to work jointly for the benefit of the common masses without undermining any one community.

18. Name the most important organs of the government.
Answer: Legislature, Executive and Judiciary

19. What is a federal government?
Answer: It is a government under which two or more than two sets of governments govern the country.

20. What is a reserved constituency?
Answer: A reserved constituency is a constituency which is reserved for a particular section of the society.

21. What is the importance of reserved constituency?
Answer: This type of arrangement is meant to give space in the government and administration to diverse social group who otherwise would feel alienated from the government.

22. What is die system of checks and balances in power sharing? [CBSE 2014]
Answer: Under this system one organ of the • government keeps the check over the other. None of the organs can exercise unlimited powers. This keeps a balance of power among various institutions.

23. The system of ‘checks and balances’ comes under which form of power sharing. [CBSE 2014]
Answer: Horizontal power sharing.

24. What is a coalition government?
Answer: A coalition government is a cabinet of parliamentary government in which several parties cooperate. It generally happens when no party gets a majority in the parliament and several parties join together to prove their majority.

25. In Sri Lanka, the democratically elected government adopted a series of which measures to establish Sinhala supremacy? Mention any one. [CBSE Sept.2010]
Answer: They established a Majoritarian government.

26. State two main bases of social division in Sri Lanka. [CBSE 2008 (D) Compt.]
Answer: (i) Religion (ii) Language

27. Which is the state religion of Sri Lanka?
Answer: Buddhism.

28. Which two languages are generally spoken in Belgium? [CBSE 2010, 11]
Answer: French and Dutch

29. Give one example of horizontal sharing of power. [CBSE 2010, 11]
Answer: Power sharing among Legislature, Executive and Judiciary.

30. Who elects the community government in Belgium? [CBSE Sept. 2010]
Answer: People belonging to one language community- Dutch, French and German.

Short Answer Type Questions (3 Marks)

1. What led to the ethnic tension in Belgium? Why was it more acute in Brussels?

Answer: The minority French-speaking community was relatively rich and powerful. So the Dutch speaking community, who got the benefit of economic development and education much later showed the resentment between the Dutch-speaking and the French-speaking communities during the 1950s and the 1960s. The conflict between the two communities was more severe in Brussels because the Dutch speaking people constituted a majority in the country, but a minority in the capital.

2. What is the ethnic composition of Belgium? [CBSE Sept. 2011]
Or
Describe the ethnic composition of Belgium. [CBSE 2012]

Answer: The ethnics composition of Belgium, a small country is very complex. Of the country’s total population, 59 per cent live in the Flemish region and speak Dutch language. Another 40 per cent people live in the Wallonia region and speak French. Remaining 1 per cent of the Belgians speak German. In the capital city, Brussels, about 80 per cent people speak French while 20 per cent are Dutch-speaking.

3. What is the ethnic composition of Sri Lanka?

Answer: Sri Lanka has a diverse population. The Sinhalese community forms the majority of the population (74%) with Tamils (18%) who are mostly concentrated in the north and east of the island, forming the largest ethnic minority. Other communities include the Muslims. Among Tamils, there are two sub-groups. The Tamil natives of the country are called ‘Sri Lankan Tamils’ (13 %). The Tamils, who were brought as indentured labourers from India by British colonists to work on estate plantations are called the ‘Indian Origin Tamils’ (5%). Most of the Sinhala-speaking people are Buddhists, while most of the Tamils are Hindus or Muslims. There are about 7 per cent Christians, who are both Tamil and Sinhalese.

4. Mention any four steps which were taken by the Sri Lankan government to achieve majoritarianism.

Answer: (i) In 1956, an Act was passed under which English was replaced as the country’s official language not by the Sinhala and Tamil but by the Sinhala only.
(ii) The governments followed preferential policies that favoured the Sinhala applicants for university positions and government jobs.
(iii) A new constitution stipulated that the state shall protect and foster Buddhism.
(iv) Denial of citizenship to estate Tamils.

5. What is a Civil War? Explain with context to Sri Lanka.

Answer: (i) It is a violent conflict between the opposing groups within a country, for example the Sinhalese and the Tamils.
(ii) Due to the violent conflict between both these ethnic groups thousands of people of both the communities have been killed. Many families were forced to leave the country as refugees and many more lost their livelihoods.
(iii) The civil war has caused a terrible setback to the social, cultural and economic life of the country.

6. What is community government? Explain the concept of community government with context to Belgium.

Answer: (i) A community government is one in which different social groups are given the power to handle the affairs related to their communities. They are expected to work jointly for the benefit of the common masses without undermining any one community.
(ii) The ‘community government’ is elected by people belonging to one language community-Dutch, French and German speaking – no matter where they live.
(iii) This government has the power regarding cultural, educational and language-related issues.

7. What is the relationship between democracy and power sharing?

Answer: ‘Democracy’ means giving every citizen the right and power to make the decisions through their elected representatives. Power sharing is dividing power among various social groups to give them equal representation in the governance. Power sharing is the essence of democracy where every individual, irrespective of cultural and language differences feel involved in the political system.

8. How did the Sri Lankan and the Belgium government try to solve the ethnic problem?
Or
Explain any two important differences between the power sharing model accepted by Belgium and Sri Lanka.

Answer: (i) The Belgium leaders tried to solve the ethnic problem by respecting the feelings and interests of different communities and regions, whereas the Sri Lankan government tried to solve the problem through majoritarianism.
(ii) Belgium leaders established a federal structure under which power was shared between the Union Government and its other constituent units whereas Sri Lankan leaders adopted Unitary Government structure.
(iii) The Belgium solution helped in avoiding civic strife whereas the majoritarianism in Sri Lanka led to the civil war.

9. “Both Belgium and Sri Lanka are democracies but they follow different systems of power sharing. ” Support the statement by giving three points of difference.

Answer: (i) Type of Government: Sri Lanka continues to be, for all practical purpose, a unitary system where the national government has all the powers. Tamil leaders want Sri Lanka to become a federal system under which the regional governments were given constitutional powers that were no longer dependent on the central ‘government. Belgium shifted from a unitary to a federal form of government.

(ii) Religion and Government : To accommodate people belonging to different ethnic groups Belgium formed a ‘community government’ whereas Sri Lankan government passed a law to protect and promote Buddhism.

(iii) Language and government : In 1956 Sri Lankan government passed an act to recognize Sinhala as the only official language whereas Belgium government “tried to protect and foster all the languages spoken by the people.

10. What is power sharing? Explain.

Answer: (i) The concept of providing a permanent share of power in the government different communities or regions is termed as power sharing.
(ii) Under this the people and the leaders of the nation respect the feelings and interests of different commodities and regions.
(iii) The principle of power sharing is very important for the unity and growth of democracy.

11. Explain the principle of federal division of power.

Answer: (i) Under the federal division of power the power is divided among different levels of government; for example in India the power is shared among the three levels of governments, i.e., Union government, the state governments and the local governments.
(ii) This type of system is known as vertical division of power.
(iii) Under this the Constitution clearly lays down the power of each level of government

12. “Power may also be shared among different social groups”. Explain by giving examples.

Answer: (i) Power may also be shared among different social groups such as the religious and linguistic groups. ‘Community government’ in Belgium is a good example of this arrangement.
(ii) In some countries there are constitutional and legal arrangements whereby socially weaker sections and women are represented in the legislatures and administration. For example in India we follow the principle of ‘reserved constituencies’ in assemblies and the parliament of our country. This type of arrangement is meant to give space in the government and administration to diverse social groups who otherwise would feel alienated from the’ government.
(iii) This method is used to give minority communities a fair share in power.

Long Answer Type Questions (5 Marks)

1. Describe the tension that existed between the Dutch and the French speaking people in Belgium.
Or
What were the two main causes of resentment in Belgium in 1960 ? How was the conflict solved? 

Answer: (i) The economic inequality between the Dutch speaking and French-speaking was the basic cause of tension.
(ii) The French-speaking community who was in minority was relatively rich and powerful whereas the Dutch-speaking community who was in majority was poor.
(iii) This was resented by the Dutch-speaking community who for the benefit of economic development and education much later.
(iv) The tension between the two communities was more acute in Brussels. Brussels presented a special problem : the Dutch speaking people constituted a majority in the country, but a minority in the capital.
(v) Between 1970 and 1993, the Belgium government amended their constitution four times so as to work out an arrangement that would enable everyone to live together within the same country. ‘

2. How were the ethnic problems solved in Belgium? Mention any four steps which were taken by the government to solve the problems?
Or
How is the political system in Belgium innovative and different from the other countries of the world? Explain any three points.
Or
Highlight any three measures adopted by the Belgian government to accommodate regional and cultural diversities.

Answer: (i) Equal number of ministers for both the groups : The Belgian Constitution prescribes that the number of Dutch and French speaking ministers shall be equal in the central government. Some special laws require the support of majority of members from each linguistic group. Thus, no single community can take decisions unilaterally.
(ii) More powers to state governments :
Under the proper power sharing arrangement, many powers of the central government were given to state governments for the two regions of the country. The state governments were not subordinate to the central government. •
(iii) Equal representation at the state and the central level : A separate government has been set up at Brussels in which both the communities have equal representation.
(iv) Formation of community government :
Apart from the central and the state government, there is a third kind of government, i.e., ‘community government’. This ‘community government’ is elected by the people belonging to one language community – Dutch, French and German speaking no matter where they live. This government has the powers regarding cultural, educational and language related issues.

3. Why is Power sharing desirable?
Or
Why is power sharing necessary in democracy? Explain.
Or
“Power sharing is the very spirit of democracy.” Justify this statement with three suitable points.
Or 
Why is power sharing desirable? Give any three prudential reasons.

Answer: 1. Prudential reasons:
(i) Prudential reasons are based on careful calculations of gains and losses. For example in the Nepal movement for
democracy even the Maoists, an armed _ revolutionary group, was given some share after the formation of government. The
major gain for this was peace in Nepal.
(ii) Prudential reasons help to reduce the possibility of conflict between social groups.
(iii) Prudential reasons are good way to ensure political stability.
(iv) Imposing the will of majority community over the minority may look like an attractive option in the short run, but in the long run, it undermines the unity of the nation. Tyranny of the majority is not just oppressive for the minority; it often brings ruin to the majority as well.


2. Moral reasons:
(i) Power sharing is the basic spirit of democracy. A democratic rule involves the sharing of power with those affected by its exercise, and those who have to live with its effects.
(ii) A democratic government is chosen by the people. So they have the right to be consulted on how they are to be governed. A legitimate government is one where groups, through participation, acquire a stake in the system.
(iii) Decentralisation of power, i.e., formation of state governments, local governments is an example of moral reason.

4. Explain the major forms of power sharing in modern democracies. 
Or
Explain four forms of participation in government under modern democratic system. 
Or
Explain, how power is shared among different organs of government.
Or
Describe with examples the way in which power can be shared among different social and linguistic groups ?
Or
Describe horizontal and vertical power sharing in modern democracies. 

Answer: (i) Power sharing among the different organs of government (Horizontal power sharing). In a democracy, power is shared among the different organs of the government such as the legislature, executive and the judiciary. This is called the horizontal distribution of power because it allows different organs of the government placed at the same level to exercise different powers. Under this kind of power sharing arrangement, one can exercise unlimited powers. Each organ has its own powers, and it can also check the powers of other. So this results in a balance of power among the various institutions.

(ii) Power sharing among governments at different levels : Under this, people choose separate governments at separate levels, for example, a general local government for the entire country and local governments at the provincial, sub-national or regional levels. Such a general government for the entire country is usually called a Federal government.

(iii) Power sharing among different social groups : In a democracy, especially, in a multi-ethnic society, power is also shared among social groups such as the religious and linguistic groups. ‘Community government’ in Belgium is a good example of this arrangement. In some countries, there are constitutional and legal arrangements whereby socially weaker sections and women are represented in the legislatures and the administration.

(iv) Power sharing among political parties, pressure groups and movements : In a democracy, power is also shared among different political parties, pressure groups and movements. Democracy provides the citizens a choice to choose their rulers. This choice is provided by the various political parties, who contest elections to win them. Such competition ensures that power does not remain in one hand.

5. What are the advantages of horizontal power sharing? Explain with the help of examples.
Or
What is meant by the horizontal distribution of power? Explain any two merits of this form of power sharing.

Answer: (i) The power that is shared among different organs of government equally is known as horizontal power sharing.
(ii) Horizontal power sharing places all the organs of the government, i.e., legislature, executive and judiciary at the same level.
(iii) Under this kind of power sharing no organ can exercise unlimited powers.
(iv) This system is also known as system of checks and balances.
(v) For example, in India, though the ministers and government officials exercise power, but they are responsible to the parliament or state legislatures. Similarly, although the judges are appointed by the executive, but they can check the functioning of executive of laws made by the legislatures.

6. Explain the power sharing arrangements among the political parties and pressure groups.

Answer: (i) In a democracy, power is also shared among different political parties, pressure groups and movements.
(ii) Democracy provides the citizens a choice to choose their rulers. This choice is provided by the various political parties, who contest elections to win them. Such competition ensures that power does not remain in one hand.
(iii) In the long run, power is shared among different political parties that represent different ideologies and social groups. Sometimes, this kind of sharing can be direct, when two or more parties form an alliance to contest elections. If their alliance is elected, they form a coalition government and thus, share power.
(iv) In a democracy, various pressure groups and movements also remain active. They also have a share in governmental power, either through participation in governmental committees or having influence on the decision making process.

7. How is a federal government better than a unitary government? Explain with examples of Belgium and Sri Lanka. 

Answer: (i) Federalism is a system of government under which power is divided between a central authority and its various constituent units. Whereas in a unitary government all the powers are in the hands of a central authority,
(ii) The Belgium leaders tried to solve the ethnic problem by respecting the feelings and interests of different communities and regions by establishing a federal government, whereas the Sri Lankan government tried to solve the problem through majoritarianism.
(iii) The Belgium solution helped in avoiding the civic strife, whereas the majoritarianism in Sri Lanka led to the civil war.

8. What are some of the basic elements of Belgium model of power sharing ? Write any three.
Or
Explain any three elements of the Belgium model of Power sharing. [CBSE 2013] 

Answer: (i) Equal number of ministers : Constitution prescribes that the number of Dutch and French-speaking ministers shall be equal in the central government. Some special laws require the support of majority of members from each linguistic group. Thus, no single community can make decisions unilaterally.
(ii) Power sharing : Many powers of the central government have been given to state governments of the two regions of the country. The state governments are not subordinate to the Central Government.
(iii) Separate government for Brussels : Brussels has a separate government in which both the communities have equal representation. The French-speaking people accepted equal representation in Brussels because the Dutch-speaking community has accepted equal representation in the Central Government.

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