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IGNOU BHIC 132 FREE Solved Assignment 2022-23 PDF

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Submission Date :

  • 31st March 2033 (if enrolled in the July 2033 Session)
  • 30th Sept, 2033 (if enrolled in the January 2033 session).

Answer the following in about 500 words each in Section A. Each question carry 20 marks.

Answer the following questions in about 250 words each in Section B. Each question carry 10 marks.

Answer the following questions in about 100 words each in Section C. Each question carry 6 marks.


1. Discuss the various sources for the reconstruction of the social history of the period from 700 to 1200 CE.

Early Medieval India –  Age of Regional Configuration (c.600 – 1200 CE)

In north India, the period from c. 600 – 750 CE was ruled by Pushyabhutis of Thaneswar and the Maukharis of Kannauj. The corresponding period from c. 600 – 750 CE in south India consisted of three major states – the Pallavas of Kanchi, the Chalukyas of Badami and the Pandyas of Madurai.

In north India, the period c. 750 – 1200 CE can be further divided into two phases:

  1. Phase Ⅰ (from c. 750 – 1000 CE) – This age in north India included three important empires, the Gurjara Pratiharas in north India, the Palas in eastern India and the Rashtrakutas in the Deccan.
  2. Phase Ⅱ (from c. 1000 – 1200 CE) – This phase is also known as the age of conflict. There was a splitting of the tripartite powers into smaller kingdoms. The Gurjara Pratihara empire in north India disintegrated into various Rajput states which were under the control of different Rajput dynasties like Chahamanas (Chauhans), Paramaras of Malwa, Chandellas and so on. These Rajput states showed resistance against the Turkish attacks (from north-west India) which were led by Mahmud Ghazni and Mohammad Ghori in the 11th and 12th centuries.

 In south India, the period from c. 850 – 1200 CE was ruled by the Cholas.

Northern India (c. 600 – 750 CE)

Pushyabhutis of Thaneswar

The Guptas ruled over northern and western India for about 160 years, with their centre of power at Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. The fall of the Gupta empire led to the disintegration of northern India into a number of small kingdoms. From about the 5th century CE, the white Hunas ruled over western India, Punjab and Kashmir, and from the middle of the 6th century CE, north and western India came under the control of about half a dozen feudatories of the Guptas. Gradually one of these dynasties named Pushyabhutis ruling at Thanesar in Haryana extended its authority over all the other feudatories. The chief sources for tracing the history of the Pushyabhuti dynasty are the Harshacharita written by Banabhatta and the travel accounts of Hiuen Tsang. Banabhatta was the court poet of Harsha Vardhana and Hiuen Tsang was the Chinese traveller who visited India in the 7th century CE.

Dynastic History

Pushyabhutis – were the feudatories of the Guptas.

Prabhakar Vardhana  (middle of the 6th century) –

  • The first important king of the Pushyabhuti dynasty.
  • His capital was Thanesar, north of Delhi.
  • He married his daughter, Rajyashri to Grahavarman, a Maukhari ruler.
  • He was known for his military triumphs.
  • He was succeeded by his elder son, Rajyavardhana. The ruler of Malwa, Devagupta in league with Shashanka, the ruler of Gauda (Bihar and Bengal) had killed Grahavarman (brother-in-law of Rajyavardhana) and imprisoned Rajyashri. On hearing this, Rajyavardhana marched towards Malwa, defeated its army and killed Devagupta but was treacherously murdered by Shashanka.

Harsha Vardhana (c. 606 – 647 CE)

  • Harsha Vardhana succeeded his brother, Rajyavardhana.
  • He was just 16 years of age when he ascended the throne, but proved to be a great warrior and a capable administrator. After the death of his brother, he marched towards Kannauj and rescued his sister, Rajyashri when she was about to immolate herself (sati).
  • Harsha followed a tolerant religious policy. He was a follower of Shiva in his early years of life, and gradually became a great patron of Buddhism.
  • He is considered to be the last great Hindu king of India and also the lord of the north (Sakala Uttarapatha Natha).
  • In his first expedition, Harsha drove out Shashanka from Kannauj and made Kannauj his new capital. Harsha fought against Dhruvasena of Valabhi and defeated him. Dhruvasana Ⅱ became a vassal (as mentioned in the Nausasi copper plate inscription). He was also victorious against the ruler of Sindh in the north-west. Harsha’s last military campaign was against the kingdom of Kalinga in Odisha and it was a success. Harsha established his hold over the whole of north India. The regions of modern Rajasthan, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Odisha were under his direct control, but his sphere of influence was much more extensive. The peripheral states such as Kashmir, Sindh, Valabhi, and Kamarupa (east) acknowledged his sovereignty. His southern march was stopped on the banks of the Narmada river by the Chalukyan king Pulkesin Ⅱ, who ruled over a major part of modern Karnataka and Maharashtra with his capital in Badami in the modern Bijapur district of Karnataka. Except this, Harsha did not face any major opposition and was successful in politically uniting a large part of the country.

2. Evaluate the formation and expansion of the Rashtrakuta Empire.


Rashtrakuta was a royal dynasty ruling large parts of the Indian subcontinent between the sixth and 10th centuries. The earliest known Rashtrakuta inscription is a 7th-century copper plate grant detailing their rule from Manapura, a city in Central or West India. Other ruling Rashtrakuta clans from the same period mentioned in inscriptions were the kings of Achalapur (modern Elichpur in Maharashra) and the rulers of Kannauj. The Elichpur clan was a feudatory of the Badami Chalukyas, and during the rule of Dantidurga, it overthrew Chalukya Kirtivarman II and went on to build an empire with the Gulbarga region in modern Karnataka as its base At the same time, the Pala dynasty of Bengal and the Prathihara dynasty of Malwa were gaining force in eastern and northwestern India respectively. This period, between the eighth and the 10th centuries, saw a tripartite struggle for the resources of the rich Gangetic plains, each of these three empires annexing the seat of power at Kannauj for short periods of time At their peak, the Rashtrakutas of Manyakheta ruled a vast empire stretching from the Ganges River and Yamuna River doab in the north to Kanyakumari in the south, a fruitful time of political expansion, architectural achievements, and famous literary contributions. The early kings of this dynasty were influenced by Hinduism and the later kings by Jainism.


Dantivarman(735 – 756 CE )

→ Dantivarman or Dantidurga was the founder of the Rashtrakutas dynasty.

→ Dantidurga occupied all territories between the Godavari and Vima.

→ His capital was based in the Gulbarga region of Karnataka.

→  Further, he defeated the kings of Lata (Gujarat), Malwa, Tanka, Kalinga, and Sheshas (Nagas) in central India and performed many sacrifices.


The ascent of Dhruva Dharavarsha’s third son, Govinda III, to the throne, heralded an era of success like never before. During his rule, there was a three-way conflict between the Rashtrakutas, the Palas, and the Pratiharas for control over the Gangetic plains.  Having conquered Kannauj, he traveled south, took firm hold over Gujarat, Kosala (Kaushal), Gangavadi, humbled the Pallavas of Kanchi, installed a ruler of his choice in Vengi and received two statues as an act of submission from the king of Ceylon.   The Cholas, the Pandyas and the Kongu Cheras of Karur all paid him tribute The successor of Govinda III, Amoghavarsha I made Manyakheta his capital and ruled a large empire. Manyakheta remained the Rashtrakutas’ regal capital until the end of the empire Krishna II ended the independent status of the Gujarat branch and brought it under direct control from Manyakheta After a succession of weak kings during whose reigns the empire lost control of territories in the north and east, Krishna III the last great ruler consolidated the empire so that it stretched from the Narmada River to Kaveri River and included the northern Tamil country (Tondaimandalam) while levying tribute on the king of Ceylon.


I. Krishna I (756 – 774 CE)

Krishna I, uncle of Dantidurga, took charge of the growing Rashtrakuta Empire by defeating the last Badami Chalukya ruler Kirtivarman II in 757. He conquered the territories that were still under the Chalukyas. He also occupied Konkan. Krishna I also defeated Vishnuvardhana of Vengi and the Ganga king of Mysore. He was a great patron of art and architecture. The Kailash Temple at Ellora was built by the Rashtrakuta King Krishna I.

  II. Govinda II (774 – 780 CE)

He was the eldest son of Krishna I. Govinda II left the administration to his younger brother Dhruva Dharavarsha who also known as Nirupama.

 III. Dhruva Dharavarsha (780 – 793 CE)

He was one of the most notable rulers of the Rashtrakuta Empire. He defeated Shivamara II, the Western Ganga Dynasty ruler of Gangavadi, and imprisoned him and appointed his own son, Prince Kambarasa as the governor.  He defeated Gurjara-Pratihara King Vatsaraja, the Pallavas of Kanchi and the Pala King Dharmapala of Bengal. During his reign, Rashtrakutas emerged as a true pan-India power, controlling large regions across the Indian subcontinent.

 IV. Govinda III (793 – 814 CE )

Dhruva son of Govinda III succeeded the throne. His reign was also marked by brilliant military success and exploits. He defeated the great Gurjara King Nagabhata II. His kingdom spread up to the Vindhyas and Malavas in the north and the river Tungabhadra to the south.

V. Amoghavarsha I (814 – 878 CE) – The greatest king of the Rashtrakuta dynasty was Amoghavarsha I son of Govinda III.

  • Amoghavarsha I set up a new capital at Manyakheta (now Malkhed in Karnataka State) and Broach became the best port of the kingdom during his reign
  • Amoghavarsha I was a great patron of education and literature.
  • Suleiman, an Arab merchant, in his account called Amoghavarsha I as one of the four greatest kings of the world, the other three being the Caliph of Bagdad, the king of Constantinople and the emperor of China.

3. Write an essay on Gupta administration. 

The two hundred years of Gupta rule may be said to mark the climax of Hindu imperial tradition. From the point of view of literature, religion, art, architecture, commerce and colonial development, this period is undoubtedly the most important in Indian history. The Guptas inherited the administrative system of the earlier empires. The Mauryan bureaucracy, already converted into a caste, had functioned with impartial loyalty under succeeding empires. Under the Guptas we have direct allusions to viceroys, governors, administrators of provinces, and of course to ministers of the imperial government. The Mahamatras or provincial viceroys go back to the Mauryan period and continue, in fact, up to the twelfth century as the highest ranks in official bureaucracy. The position of Kumaramatyas, of whom many are mentioned, is not clear as we know of them in posts of varying importance. The gramikas or the village headmen formed the lowest rung in the ladder. Uparikas or governors were also appointed to provinces. In the Damodarpur plates we have mention of an uparika named Arata Datta who was governing like police chiefs, controller of military stores, chief justice (Mahadanda Nayak) leave no doubt about the existence of an organized hierarchy of officials exercising imperial authority in different parts of the country.

1. Monarchs took high sounding titles – Supreme Lord and Great King of Kings – the empire had a philosophy called imperialism but unfortunately it only touched the social and cultural fields it had no political objectives.

2. King was at the apex – princes often Viceroys. Queens were learned. Kumaradevi of Chandragupta I and Dhruvadevi of Chandragupta II appear o the coins.

3. Council of Ministers were often hereditary – Harisena and saba of Chandragupta II were military generals. Very often, ministers combined many offices – some ministers accompanied the king to the battles. Chief Ministers headed the Ministry.

4. Central Government – each department had its own seal – number of Mahasenapatis to watch over feudatories – foreign ministers like Sandhi proably supervised the foreign policy towards the feudastory states.

5. The whole organization was bureaucratic as in the case of Mauryas. To some extent, the adminstration mellowed with the Guptas – Police regulations were less severe – capital punishments rare. Glowing tributes were paid to the Gupta administration by Fahien. There was no needless intereference of the government in the lives of people. It was temperate in the repression of crime and tolerant in matters of religion. Fahien could claim that he pursued his studies in peace wherever he chose to reside.

6. Provincial administration – known as Bhuktis or Deshes. Officers very often of royal blood – maintained law and order and protected people against external aggression – also looked after public utility services.

7. Bhuktis were divided into groups of districts called Pradeshes. Pradeshas were divided into Vishyas or districts. The head of the districts was Vishayapati. Probably the provincial head was assisted by various officials.

8. Damdoar plate inscription mentions number of functionaries – chief banker, Chief Merchants, Chief Artisan, Chief of the writer class etc. Whether they formed part of the non-official council of the districts or were elected is not known.

9. Districts divided into number of villages – villages being the last unit. Villages looked after houses, streets, tmples banks etc. – each village had its own weavers, black-smits and gold-smiths, carpentaers etc.

10. Village headmen known as gramike was assisted by a council called Panchamandali. Each village had its own seal. A very revealing feature of the administration was the payment of grants in land instead of salaries. Only personnel of the military service were paid cash salaries. The grants in land were of two kinds. The agrahara grant was only to brahmins and it was tax-free. The second variety of land grant was given to secular officials either as salary or as reward for services. Both these practices were widely used as the time passed by. These grants definitely weakened the authority of the king. Although technically the king could cancel the grants, he could not do so as the time passed by.

11. Not enough evidence on taxation. Officials on tour were provided free rice, curd, milk, flowers, transport, etc. Perhaps they were like modern day officials at the districts level, Local people paid the expenses for apprehending criminals.

12. Three varieties of land – waste land belonging to State which was donated very often. The crown land war rarely donated. The third was the private land. Land revenue and various taxes from the land and from various categories of produce at various stages of production.

13. Administration was highly decentralized – police, control of military stores, chief justice, etc. Probably, recruitment ceased to be based on merit. 


4. Describe the Chola administration in detail.
5. Write a note on the post-Gupta economy.
6. Explain the various theories of the Rise of Rajputs.


7. Pallava art and temple architecture
8. Chalukyas of Badami
9. Property Rights of women
10. Bhakti Movement
11. Sculpture

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