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Forest Society and Colonialism Class 9 Extra Questions with Answers
Very Short Answer Type Questions
How are forests useful to us?
Forests provide bamboo, wood for fuel, grass, charcoal, packaging, fruits, flowers, animals, birds and many other things.
Which common feature is found in the Amazon forests and the Western Ghats?
It is possible to find as many as 500 different plant species in one forest patch in the Amazon forests and the Western Ghats.
What is deforestation?
The disappearance of forests is referred to as deforestation.
Mention the reason for increased landmass under cultivation in India.
Over the centuries, population increased, demand for food went yp so peasants extended the boundaries of cultivation, clearing forests and breaking new land.
Why did the British encourage the production of commercial crops in India?
The demand for the commercial crops like jute, sugar, wheat and cotton increased in the 19th century Europe. Food grains were required to feed the growing urban population and raw materials were needed for industrial production.
What are sleepers?
Wooden planks laid across railway tracks, to hold them in position are called sleepers.
Why did oak forests in England disappear?
Oak forests in England were disappearing fast because oak wood was needed to build ships.
Why was wood needed for railways?
Wood was needed as fuel to run the locomotives and to lay railway lines sleepers to hold the tracks together.
How did the forests around railway tracks start disappearing.
The railway tracks expanded, trees were being cut for sleepers. The government gave out contracts to individuals to fulfil the supply and they cut the trees indiscriminately.
Name the plantations for which large areas of India’s natural forest were cleared.
Large areas of natural forests were cleared for the cultivation of tea, coffee and rubber plantation.
Name any two beverage crops.
Tea and coffee are beverage crops.
Why did the British feel the locals were destroying forests?
According to the Britishers, the use of forests by local people, the reckless felling of trees by traders would destroy forests.
Who was Dietrich Brandis?
Dietrich Brandis was a German expert who was invited by Britishers to give advice on the matters of forest management. He was made the first Inspector General of Forests in India.
When and where was the Imperial Forest Research Institute set up?
The Imperial Forest Research Institute was set up at Dehadun in 1906.
What is scientific forestry?
A system of cutting trees controlled by the forest department, in which different varities of trees are cut and one type of trees are planted.
In which three categories forests were divided according to 1878 Act?
Forests were divided into three categories: reserved, protected and village forests.
For what purpose did the people in the forests use bamboo? [CBSE 2016]
Bamboo was used to make fences and to make umbrellas and baskets.
How did the new forest laws affect the hunter and forest dwellers in 1927? [CBSE 2016]
Forest Act meant severe hardship to villagers. After the Act, all their everyday practices like cutting wood for houses, grazing cattle, collecting fruits and roots, hunting and fishing became illegal. They were punished for poaching.
What is Swidden agriculture?
In Swidden agriculture, parts of the forest are cut and burnt in rotation. Seeds are sown in the ashes. The crop is harvested by October-November. Such plots are cultivated for a few years and then left follow for 12-18 years for the forest to grow back.
By which local name shifting cultivation is known in Central America?
What is another name of Swidden agriculture?
Write any two local terms for Swidden agriculture used in India.
Jhum, kumri, dhya, penda, bewar, nevad, podu, khandad. (any two)
What were the types of crops grown through shifting cultivation?
In Central India and Africa it could be millets, in Brazil manioc and in other parts of Latin America maize and beans.
What did the large animals signify in Britishers view?
The Britishers saw large animals as a sign of a wild, primitive and savage society. They believed that . by killing dangerous animals they would civilise India.
How did some people benefit from the laws of forest department?
The laws of forest department opened up new opportunities in trade. Some communities left their traditional occupations and started trading in forest products.
Who were the Mundurucu peoples of the Brazilian Amazon?
Mundurucu peoples of the Brazilian Amazon lived in villages on high ground, cultivated manioc and collected latex from rubber trees for supplying to traders.
Name three pastoralist and nomadic communities of the Madras Presidency.
Korava, Karacha and Yerukula.
Who were known as criminal tribes?
Some of the pasoralist of the Madras presidency were known as crimal tribes.
Who were recruited to work on tea plantations in Assam?
Both men and women from forest communties like Santhals and Oraons from Jharkhand, and Gonds from Chhattisgarh were recruited to work on tea plantations.
Name the two leaders of the forest communities who rebelled against the British.
The two leaders were:
(a) Birsa Munda of Chhotanagpur
(b) Alluri Sitaram Raju of Andhra Pradesh
(c) Siddhu and Kanu in the Santhal Palganas (any two)
Where is Bastar located?
Bastar is located in the southernmost part of Chhattisgarh and borders Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Maharashtra.
Which river flows through Baster region?
Name the various communities who live in Bastar.
The different communities are Maria and Muria Gonds, Dhurwas, Bhatras and Halbas.
What do you mean by devsari, dand or man?
If people from Bastar village want to take some wood from the forests of another village they pay a small fee called devsari, dand or man.
What are forest villages?
Forest villages are those villages where people were allowed to stay in the reserved forests on the condition that they would work free for the forest department in cutting and transporting trees and protecting the forest from fires.
Where did the reservation first take place in Bastar?
The reservation first took place in the Kanger forest in Bastar.
Who was Gunda Dhur?
Gunda Dhur, from village Nethanar, was an important figure in the movement against the British.
How was the message given to the villagers to rebel against the British government?
Mango boughs, a lump of earth, chillies and arrows were circulated among villagers.
What did the World Bank propose in 1970s?
The World Bank proposed that 4600 hectares of natural sal forest should be replaced by tropical pine to provide pulp for the paper industry.
Name the colonial power in Indonesia.
The Dutch were the colonial power in Indonesia.
Where did the Dutch start forest management?
The Dutch started forest management in Java.
Who were the Kalangs of Java?
The Kalangs were a community of skilled forest cutters and shifting cultivators.
Why did the Dutch feel the need to enact forest laws in Java? [CBSE 2015,2016]
In the 19th century, when it became necessary to control territory and not just the people, the Dutch enacted forest laws in Java, restricting villagers’ access to forests. Now wood could only be cut for specified purposes.
Why were the villagers punished?
The villagers were punished for grazing cattle, transporting wood without permit or travelling on forest roads with horse carts or cattle.
What was the blandongdiensten system?
It was a system which exempted villagers from rent in exchange for free labour and supply of buffaloes for transporting timber.
What was Samin’s challenge?
Randublatung village was a teak village. Surontiko Samin questioned state ownership of forests. People protested against the Dutch by lying down on their land, and by refusing to pay taxes or fines or perform labour.
What policy did the Dutch follow during war?
The Dutch followed ‘a scorched earth’ policy. They destroyed sawmills, burnt huge piles of teak logs so that they would not fall into enemy’s hands (Japanese).
Name a few sacred groves.
Samas, devarakudu, kan and red etc.
Short Answer Type Questions
What is deforestation? How did cultivation expand rapidly during the colonial period?
The disappearance of forests is referred to as deforestation. Cultivation expanded rapidly during the colonial period in the following ways.
(a) The British encouraged the production of commercial crops like sugar, wheat, jute and cotton.
(b) Large areas of forests, considered to be wilderness was brought under cultivation.
(c) Large areas of natural forests were also cleared to make way for tea, coffee and rubber plantations to meet Europe’s growing need for these commodities. (any two)
Who was appointed as the first Inspector General of Forests in India? Explain any three reforms introduced by him. [CBSE 2011]
Dietrich Brandis, a German expert, was appointed as the First Inspector General of forests in India by the British Government to save the forests.
The following were the main reforms introduced by Dietrich Brandis.
(a) In 1864, Dietrich Brandis set up the ‘Indian Forest Service’ (IFS) and helped formulate the Indian Forest Act of 1865.
(b) He encouraged/advised for ‘scientific forestry’ where in place of natural forests, one type of trees were planted in straight rows.
According to the Forest Act of 1878, there were three categories of forests—reserved, protected and village forests. Villagers were not allowed to take anything from the forests.
According to the plan/reform, Forest officials surveyed and planned that every year how much of the plantation will be cut and replanted so that trees remain always ready to be cut again, in some years.
(c) In 1906, the Imperial Forest Research Institute was set up in Dehradun.
What is scientific forestry? How did the forest officials implement it?
In scientific forestry, natural forests, which had different kind of trees, were cut down. In their place one type of trees were grown in straight rows.
Forest officials surveyed the area and estimated how much of the plantation was to be cut. The area was then replanted and trees could be cut after a few years.
Why is it necessary to increase area under forests? Give three reasons. [CBSE 2010]
(a) Forests are useful as the people use forest products in a variety of ways. Fruits and tubers were eaten because they were nutritious and herbs were used for medicinal purposes.
(b) Bamboo was used to make fences, baskets and umbrellas. The wood was used to make agricultural implements like yokes and ploughs.
(c) A dried scooped-out gourd was used as a portable water bottle. Oil for cooking and lighting lamps was acquired from the fruit of the Mahua tree.
(d) The siadi creeper was used to make ropes and leaves could be used, usually stitched together to make disposable cups and plates. (any three)
Why did the government ban shifting cultivation? What was the result?
European foresters regarded the practice of shifting cultivation as harmful. They felt:
(a) the land which was used for cultivation every few years could not grow trees for railway timber.
(b) when the forests were burnt, there was a danger of flames spreading and burning valuable timber.
(c) It became difficult for the government to calculate taxes.
Many communities were forcibly displaced from the forest, some had to change their occupations.
Why was hunting popular in India and what were its effects? [CBSE 2015]
Ftunting of big game was a popular sport in India. It was a popular sport among the emperors and
nobility. Many Mughal paintings show emperors and princes enjoying a hunt. Under colonial rule, hunting increased to such an extent that many species became extinct. For the British, large animals was a sign or primitive society. They believed that by killing large animals, they would civilise India. Tigers, leopards and wolves were killed, because they posed a threat to the villagers. Over 80,000 tigers, 150,000 leopards and 20,00,00 wolves were killed. Only then did environmentalists and conservators advocate that these animals had to be protected.
What was the impact of regulation of trade in forest products by the British government in India? [CBSE 2010]
Following was the import of regulations of trade in forest products by the British government in India.
(a) Trade in forest products was completely regulated by the British government. It gave many large European trading firms the sole right to trade in the fofest products of particular areas in Indian Forests.
(b) The grazing and hunting by local people were restricted. In the process many nomadic communities like the Koravas and Karacha lost their livelihood.
(c) Some of them began to be called ‘criminal tribes’ and were forced to work in factories and plantations under government supervision.
Name two communities that live in Bastar. Mention some of the beliefs regarding nature of the communities of Bastar? [CBSE 2010]
The communities living in Bastar are, Maria, Muria Gonds, Dhurwar and Halbas. (any two)
Their beliefs regarding nature are as follows:
(a) The people believed that each village was given its land by the Earth and thus they look after the earth by making some offerings at each agricultural festival.
(b) Respect is also shown to the spirits of the river, the forest and the mountain.
(c) As each village was aware of its boundaries, all the natural resources within that boundary were looked after by the local people.
(d) If people from a village wanted to take some wood from the forests of another village, they paid a small fee called dand. Some villages protect their forests by engaging watchmen and every household contributes some grain to pay them. (any three)
Describe the main causes of the revolt of Bastar. [CBSE 2010, 2016] [HOTS]
The main causes of the revolt of Bastar were as follows.
(a) The colonial government wanted to reserve 2/3 of the forests in 1905 and stop shifting cultivation, hunting and collection of forest produce.
(b) Some villagers were allowed to stay in the reserved forest on the condition that they worked free for the forest department in cutting and transporting trees and protecting the forest from fires. These villages came to be known as forest villages. People of other villages were removed without any compensation. They were not given prior notice.
(c) For long people had suffered under increased rents and demand for free labour and goods by forest officials. People also suffered because of famines in 1899-1900 and again in 1907-1908.
Explain the provisions of the Forest Act passed by the Dutch. [CBSE 2010]
The Provision of Forest Act passed by the Dutch were as follows:
(a) The Dutch restricted the villagers’ access to forests.
(b) Wood could only be cut for specified purposes like making river boats or constructing houses only from certain forests under close supervision.
(c) Villagers were punished for grazing cattle in young stands, transporting wood without a permit or travelling on forest roads with horse carts or cattle.
What new developments have occurred in forestry in Asia and Africa in recent times? [CBSE 2010]
(a) In recent years, Asian and African governments introduced social forestry and they realised that
the policy of keeping forest communities away from forests have only resulted in conflicts.
(b) Conservation of forests rather than collecting timber became the primary aim. In order to meet this goal, the government realised that the involvement of people living near the forests is a must.
(c) In fact, across India from Mizoram to Kerala dense forests have survived only because villagers protected them in sacred groves known as kan, rai and sarnas.
(d) Some villages patrolled their own forests with each household taking turns instead of leaving it
to forest guards. (any three)
Long Answer Type Questions
How did commercial farming lead to a decline in forest cover during colonial period? [CBSE 2011]
The factors which led to deforestation during the colonial rule are as follows:
(a) The British encouraged the production of commercial crops like wheat, sugar, jute and cotton. The demands for these crops increased in the 19th century Europe because food grains were needed to feed the growing urban population and raw materials were required for growing industries.
(b) In the 19th century, the colonial government thought that forests were unproductive. The land had to be brought under cultivation, which would increase food production and revenue. Between 1880 and 1920 cultivation area rose by 6.7 million hectares. The forests had to the cleared. As the population increased and demand for food went up, the forests were cleared for the expansion of agricultural land.
(c) The oak forests were fast depleting. It became a problem to supply timber for the Royal Navy. Ships could not be built without a regular supply of timber. Ships were needed to protect the overseas colonies. By 1820 search parties were sent to explore forest resources in India. Trees were being cut on a large scale and exported to England.
(d) Wood was needed as fuel to run locomotives and to lay sleepers which could hold the railways tracks. As early as 1850, 3500 trees were cut annually in Madras presidency for sleepers.
(e) Large areas of forests were cleared to make way for tea, coffee and rubber plantations.
Why was Dietrich Brandis invited by the British government? What steps were taken by him to protect forests?
The Britishers feared that the reckless felling and cutting of trees by traders destroyed the forests. So they invited Dietrich Brandis for advice and made him the first Inspector General of Forests in India.
The steps taken by Brandis to protect the forests were:
(a) A proper system was adopted to manage forest and people to conserve forests.
(b) Rules about the use of forest resources were framed.
(c) Felling of trees and grazing of land was restricted, so that forests could be used for timber production.
(d) Anyone who did not follow the system was punished. Brandis set up the Indian Forest Service in 1864.
What was the practice of shifting cultivation? Why did European foresters want to unfollow it?
One of the major impacts of European colonialism was on the practice of shifting cultivation or Swidden agriculture.
This practice was followed in Asia, Africa and South America. In shifting cultivation, parts of the forest are cut and burnt. After the first monsoon showers, seeds are sown in the ashes and crop is harvested in October-November. Such plots are cultivated for a few years and then left fallow for 12 to 18 years for the forest to grow.
European foresters did not want the cultivators to follow this practice. They felt that the land which was used for cultivation for a few years could not grow trees to provide timber for railways. When the forests were burnt, there was a danger of flames spreading to other parts of the forest. If was also difficult for the government to calculate taxes. So they decided to ban shifting cultivation.
‘The new forest laws changed the lives of forest dwellers. They could not hunt’. How? [HOTS]
The forest laws changed the lives of forest dwellers significantly. Before the forest laws, many people who lived in or near the forests lived by hunting deer, partridges and a number of small animals. The customery right of the forest dwellers was prohibited by the forests law. They were punished for poaching, if caught hunting.
Hunting of big game became a sport under colonial rule. Hunting increased so much, that various species became extinct. British believed large animals were a sign of primitive society and by killing dangerous animals they would civilise India. People were rewarded for killing tigers, wolves and other animals because they were a threat to the cultivators.
Describe the life of the tribal people of Bastar. [CBSE 2016]
(a) Bastar is located in the southernmost part of Chhattisgarh and borders Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Maharashtra. A number of different communities such as Maria and Muria Gonds, Dhurwas, Bhatras and Halbas live in Bastar. They speak different languages but have common beliefs and customs.
(b) The people in Bastar believe that the Earth gave land to each village and in return they look after the land and make offerings at each agricultural season.
(c) They also show respect to the spirit of the rivers, mountains and the forests.
(d) The local people of the village look after the natural resources of the village. If people wanted wood from another village, they had to make payments, called devsari, dand or man. Some people also engaged watchmen to look after their forest and each household contributed some grain to pay them.
(e) Every year the headmen of the villages met and discussed issues concerning the forest.
Who were the Kalangs of Java? How did Samins challenge the Dutch?
Kalangs of Java were a community of skilled forest cutters and shifting cultivators. Without their expertise, it would have been difficult to harvest teak and for the kings to build their palaces. When the Mataram kingdom was split in 1755, the 6000 Kalang families were equally divided between the two kingdoms. When the Dutch gained control over the forests, they tried to make Kalangs work under them. The Kalangs revolted and attacked the Dutch fort at Joana.
Around 1890, Surontiko Samin of Randublatung village, a teak forest village, began questioning the state ownership of forests. He was supported by his sons-in-law and about 3000 families. Some of the Saminists protested by lying down on their land when Dutch came to survey it, while others refused to pay taxes or perform labour.
On the given map of Indonesia, locate and label the following items.
Indonesia: Consists of the following islands Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Kalimantan and West Irian.
Randublatung: A village with teak forest surontiko Samin of the village questioned state ownership of the forest.
Soolay pagoda: Sleepers were piled here after forests were cut and cleared.
Rembang: A logyard under Dutch colonial control.
In the outline map of India, mark and name the following :
- Western Ghats
- Madras Presidency:
(i) Where as early as 1830s, 35000 trees were cut.
(ii) Pastoralist and nomadic communities like Korava, Karacha and Yerukula lost their livelihood.
- Dehradun: Imperial Forest Research Institute was set up at Dehradun in 1906.
- Nomadic tribes: Baigas in Central India, Banjaras in Madhya Pradesh, Santhals in Assam, Oraons in Jharkhand Gonds in Chhattisgarh.
- Kanger forest