MCQs on Indian Economy in the Pre-colonialisation Era

Pre-colonisation, India’s economy was largely agrarian with a significant amount of trade and commerce happening between regions. While there was no formal currency system, the barter system was prevalent.

During this era, Indian kingdoms minted their own coins which generally depicted the king or goddesses. A wide range of crops was cultivated across the country and foreign trade was carried out through the ports.

Here are some MCQs on the Indian economy in the pre-colonialization era:


1. What economic system did India have before the British colonized it?

a. Socialism

b. Capitalism

c. Feudalism

d. Independent

Answer: d

Explanation: India had an independent economy before the British rule. Agriculture was the main source of livelihood for majority of population, even though the country’s economy was characterised by various kinds of manufacturing activities.


2. Which of the following factors contributed to the development of India’s pre-colonial economy?

a. The development of agriculture

b. The use of natural resources

c. The development of trade and commerce

d. All of the above

Answer: All of these

Explanation: There are a number of factors that contributed to the development of India’s pre-colonial economy. One of the most important factors was the abundance of natural resources in the country. India had a large population which provided a ready market for goods and services. The country’s location also made it a convenient stopover for trade routes between East and West. The result was a thriving economy that was able to support a large population.

Another important factor was the development of agriculture. Agriculture allowed for the growth of cities and the development of trade. It also provided a reliable source of food and income for the people. The development of irrigation systems made agriculture even more productive.

The development of industry and commerce also played a role in the growth of the economy. The growth of the textile industry, in particular, helped to spur economic growth. The development of communication and transportation infrastructure also made it easier for people to trade goods and services.

All of these factors contributed to the development of India’s pre-colonial economy. The country’s rich natural resources, large population, and strategic location made it a perfect place for economic growth. The development of agriculture, industry, and commerce further boosted the economy. As a result, India became a thriving economic power prior to colonization.


3. What were the main exports of India during the pre-colonial era?

a. spices

b. textiles

c. gold

d. all of the above

Answer: d

Explanation: India was a major center of trade and commerce during the pre-colonial era. The main exports of India during this time were spices, textiles, and other goods. India was also a major source of precious metals, such as gold and silver.


4. What was the primary mode of transportation used in India during the pre-colonial era?

a. cars

b. trains

c. boats

d. elephants

Answer: d

Explanation: Most prefered modes were horse chariots, bullock carts , elephants , oxens and camels. Bullock carts were the chief means of transportation on land. The basic bullock cart was very much similar to the ones which are used in northern India till today.


5. What was the primary currency used in India during the pre-colonial era?

a. the rupee

b. the dollar

c. the pound

d. the Ankara

Answer: a

Explanation: The primary currency used in India during the pre-colonial era was the rupee. The rupee was first introduced by the Mughal Empire in the 16th century and was then adopted by the British during the colonial period. After independence, the rupee became the official currency of India.


6. Which of the following was not a major crop cultivated in India during the pre-colonialisation era?

a. Rice

b. Wheat

c. cotton

d. all of these

Answer: d

Explanation: There are many crops that were cultivated in India before colonialisation. These include rice, wheat, cotton, and more. However, there was one crop that was not majorly cultivated in India during this era: tobacco.

Tobacco is a plant that is native to the Americas. It was first introduced to India by the Portuguese in the 16th century. However, it did not become widely cultivated in India until the British arrived in the 18th century.

During the British rule, tobacco was widely planted in India. This was due to the high demand for tobacco in Britain and other parts of Europe. However, after independence, tobacco cultivation in India declined. This is because the Indian government placed high taxes on tobacco products.

Today, tobacco cultivation is still not very common in India. This is because it is considered to be harmful to one’s health. Even though tobacco was not a major crop in India during the pre-colonialisation era, it is still grown in some parts of the country.


7. What was the primary form of currency during the pre-colonialisation era?

a. Gold

b. Silver

c. Copper

d. all of these

Answer:

Explanation: Before colonisation, different areas around the world used different forms of currency. For example, in Africa, people used items such as shells, beads, and metal ingots. In Asia, people used gold, silver, and copper coins. And in Europe, people used gold and silver coins. There was no single primary form of currency during the pre-colonialisation era.


 8. What was the main occupation of people in India during the pre-colonialisation era?

a. Agriculture

b. Manufacturing

c. Service sector

d. Trade and commerce

Answer: a

Explanation: During the pre-colonialisation era in India, the main occupation of people was agriculture. This was because the climate and geographical conditions were conducive to growing crops, and there was a high demand for food from the growing population. Other occupations that were common during this time included handicrafts, trading and manual labor.


9. In which one of the following cities did the British East India Company set up its first factory?

a. Cochin

b. Kolkata

c. Calicut

d. Surat

Answer: d

Explanation: The British East India Company set up its first factory in Surat in 1613. The city was then a major center of trade between India and the rest of the world. The company built a fort in the city and establish a trading post. The factory became the headquarters of the company’s operations in India. The company continued to expand its presence in the country, opening more factories in other cities.


10. In 1850, on the eve of the rise of large-scale industry in India, which of the following was the most prominent community engaged in the trade of the two principal exportable goods from the western coast, cotton and opium?

a. European capitalists

b. Bengali traders

c. Parsis

d. Chettiars

Answer: c

Explanation: In 1850, on the eve of the rise of large-scale industry in India, the most prominent community i.e Parsis engaged in the trade of the two principal exportable goods from the western coast, cotton and opium. Colonial commodities created conditions that can be better understood in a global context and by scrutinizing the interconnections between developments in different parts of the world. As is well known, opium was a major colonial commodity. It was linked to trade in several other commodities of the modern era such as tea, sugar, cotton, and slaves. The movement of these commodities across continents shaped capitalism in very specific ways. In the case of India, for instance, earnings from the several components of the opium enterprise played a vital role in the growth of industrial capitalism in western India.

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