General Knowledge Study Material Part 3

You will find here the best content on History of Modern India. In competitive exams, General Knowledge is among the four main sections like English LanguageQuantitative Aptitude, and Reasoning Ability Tests. General Knowledge Study Material Part 3 includes the most important questions, and Free Mock Tests.


Vasco-De-Gama, a Portuguese Sailor, was the first European to discover the sea-route to India .

The Dutch came after the Portuguese and were followed by the English and the French .

In 1600 AD the East India Company was formed by some English merchants .

The East India Company’s Ambassador to the court of Jahagir was Sir Thomas Roe.

In 1690 A.D. Auranzeb gave permission to the Company for ‘duty free’ trade in Bengal .

In the Battle of Plassey (1757 AD) Siraj-ud-Daula, Nawab of Bangal was defeated by Robert Clive .

Sir, Robert Clive, the first Governor of Bengal, is credited with laying the foundation of the British Empire in India.

The Contact of India with England and other European countries in the post – medieval period started in the form of trade relations.

The first settlements of East India Company, which was a group of private merchants in London, were set up in India at SURAT IN 1613 .

The East India Company, in competition with other companies from France, Portugal, Holland, Denmark etc. carried on trade with Indians at the sufferance of the Moghul and local rulers .

There were numerous risings in the first hundred years of British rule in India .

The Revolt of 1857 shook the foundations of British Authority in India .

The Revolt erupted at Meerut ( U.P. ) on May 10, 1857 – a hundred years after the battle of Plassey (1757) .

The main leaders of the revolt were Kunwar Singh of Jagdispur, Nana Shaheb of Kanpur, Tantia Tope and Rani Lakhsmi Bai of Jhansi .

Warren Hastings was the first Governor General of Bengal .

Lord Canning was the first Viceroy and Governor – General of India .

Lord Canning was the Governor General of India when the first war of Indian Independence or the Great Revolt ( 1857 ) took place.

Lord Harding was the Viceroy of India when the British Capital was shifted from Calcutta to Delhi in   1911 .

Louis Mountbatten was the first Governor – General of free India ( Aug.15,1947 to Jan. 25, 1950) .

Rajagopalchari was the first and last Indian Governor-General of free India ( June 21, 1948 to Jan. 25, 1950 ) .

Clement Attlee ( Labour Party ) was the British Prime Minister when India achieved Independence .

Important Governor Generals of  Indian

WARREN HASTINGSStrengthening of the foundation of the British Empire laid by the  Robert Clive .
LORD CORNWALLISIntroduction of ‘Permanent Settlement of Bengal ( Zamindari System ) in 1793 under which Zamindars were given the parmanent right to collect taxes from the peasants .
LORD WELLESLEYAdoption of the policy of “ Subsidiary Alliance” ( It helped in subordinating the Indian Princes to the British Power ).
LORD WILLIAM BENTICK‘Prohibition of Sati’ ,elimination of thugs, introduction of English as the medium of  higher education in India .
LORD DALHAUSIE‘Doctrine of Lapse’, Opening of the Ist Railway , telegraph lines , Post offices throughout India.
Important Governor Generals of  Indian

Important Viceroys of India (1856 to 1947)

LORD CANNING  ( 1856-1862 )      Ist three Universities of India ( Calcutta , Bombay and Madras ) were established in 1857 ( the fourth university i.e. Allahabad University was set up in 1887 ) .
LORD RIPPON  ( 1880-1884 )                Local Self – Government Act . 
LORD CURZON  ( 1899-1905 )  PARTITION OF BENGAL (1905) .
LORD MOUNTBATTEN (1947-1948)Mountbatten plan for partition of India , Indian Independence Act 1947.
Important Viceroys of India (1856 to 1947)

Indian National Congress ( INC )

The Indian National Congress was founded by A.O. Hume in Dec., 1885.

W.C. Banerjee was the first President of Indian National Congress.

In 1905 Lord Curzon ordered the ‘ Partition of Bengal ’ which greatly angered the people and the Bangalis felt Curzon was trying to undo their unity and stir up religious differences . As a result ‘Swadeshi Movement’ started and the leaders began to preach the boycott of British goods .

In 1907 at the Surat Session of Congress there was a split between the Moderates and Extremists of the Congress. The main reason for the spilt was that the Moderates did not want to oppose the British government openly . In 1916, due to the efforts of Mrs. Annie Besant and Subba Rao, the two groups were reunited at the Lucknow Session of Congress .

Lucknow Pact ( 1916 ) is the name of the pact which was entered between the Indian National Congress and the Muslim League at Lucknow . Both Parties agreed to work unitedly towards the realization of Dominion Status for India.

Provincial and Central Legislative Councils

In 1906, Muslim League was formed under the leadership of Sir. Sayad Ahmad Khan.

In 1913, the Ghadar Party was founded by Lala Hardayal in San Francesco. The other leaders were Madam Cama, Ras Bihari Bose, Raja  M. Pratap etc.

The Home Rule Movement was started by Mrs. Annie Besant and Bal Ganga Dhar Tilak with the object of obtaining Home Rule or Semi Government within the British Empire by all constitutional means. Its headquarter was at Adyar near Madras .

In 1919, Rowlatt Act was passed under which the British administration could detain people in prison for an indefinite period without trial .

Mahatma Gandhi with the object of offering peaceful resistance to cruel and unjust laws, started ‘SATYAGRAHA MOVEMENT’.

In 1919, to suppress the mass agitation , General Dyer ordered his troops to open fire on the peaceful assembly of a protest meeting called by Mahatma Gandhi in the Jalliawalan Bagh in Amritsar and Killed hundreds of innocent people .

In 1920, Khilafat Agitation was started by Ali Brothers ( Mohd. Ali and Shaukat Ali ) against the British Policy towards the Turkish Empire and their decision to disband the office of the Khalifa .

Mahatma Gandhi first applied his technique of Satyagrah in South Africa .

1917, Gandhiji lead his first non-violent struggle ( Champaran Satyagraha ) for the peasants of Champaran District , Bihar against the white Indigo planters .

The slogan ‘Do or Die’ is associated with Mahatma Gandhi .

In 1921-22, under the leadership of Mahatma Gandhi, the Congress Launched ‘ Non-cooperation Movements ’ . Indians were called upon to surrender their titles, stop cooperation with the British in all fields and to refuse to offer themselves as recruits for services . However, because of the movement turning violent at Chauri  Chaura , in mid Feb 1922, Gandhiji called off the movement .

In 1922, C.R. Das and Moti Lal Nehru founded “SWARAJ PARTY” with the object of contesting elections and obstructing the working of the legislatures from within .

The ‘SIMON COMMISSION’ ( 1927 ) was boycotted by the Congress because all its members were  British .

On the midnight of 31st Dec.’ 1929 the goal of ‘POORNA SWARAJ’ was set by the Indian National Congress (at its Lahore session ) under the presidentship of Jawaharlal Nehru .

In 1930, Mahatma Gandhi undertook ‘DANDI MARCH’ to make salt on the sea shore of Dandy                  ( Gujarat ) in defiance of the salt – law regulations .

The Second Round Table Conference ( London, 1931 ) was attended by Mahatma Gandhi as the sole representative of Congress while the congress did not participate in the 1st and IIIrd Round Table Conferences ( London ) .

The Gandhi – Irwin Pact ( 1931 ) put forward that all political prisoners were set free and confisticated properties were restored . The congress agreed to suspend Civil Disobedience Movement and participated in the Second Round Table Conference.

Netaji Subhash Chandra Bosh founded the INDIAN NATIONAL ARMY ( Azad Hind Fouj ) in 1943 at Singapore. The I.NA. marched triumphantly through Burma up to the borders of India. But his attempt collapsed with the defeat of Japan .

The I.N.A. trials were held in the Red Fort at Delhi . Pandit Nehru defended them in Court .

Lord Mountbatten’s Plan provided that India will be partitioned into two Dominions .

Bhoodan movement was begun by Acharya Vinoba Bhave on April 18,1951.

Vinba Bhave was the founder of Sarvodaya Movement . This movement stands for the betterment of human beings, communal harmony, amelioration of condition of Harijans, use of Khadi and equal rights for men and women .

Important Dates in Indian History

3000 – 1500 B.C.Indus Valley Civilization, Mohenjodaro ( Sindh ) and Harappa ( Montgomery Dist ) .
599 B.C.Birth of Mahavira ( Bihar )
567 B.C.               Birth of Gautam Buddha at Lumbini ( Indo-Nepal Border ) .
327 – 326 B.C.Alexander’s invasion of India .
273 – 232 B.C.Ashok’s reign.
58 B.C.                Begining of Vikrama Era.
30 A.D.Jesus Christ Crucified.
78 A.D. Beginning of Sake Era.
320 A.D.              Gupta Era begins (Feb.26).
622 A.D.Hijri Era begins
1001 A.D.First invasion of India by Mohammad of Gazni.
1025 A.D.Mohamed of Gazni destroyed Somnath Temple.
1206 A.D.Foundation of the first  Muslim Dynasty in India by Kutub-ud –din-Aibek.
1498 A.D.Discovery of Sea route to India by Vascodigama     ( Portuguese) who reached Calicut on the west coast of India.
1600 A.D.            East India Company was established in India.
1612 A.D.First British factory was set up at Surat.
1680 A.D.Aurangzeb granted trading facilities to the British
1833 A.D.            Macaulay recommended English to be the medium of instruction in India (it was actually introduced in 1935 ).
1853 A.D.            First Railway line (Bombay to Thane ) opened in India.
1857 A.D.            Sepoy Mutiny.
1858 A.D.            End of the East India Company rule in India and the administration was transferred to the British crown.
1869 A.D.Birth of Mahatma Gandhi.
1929 A.D.             ‘Purna Swaraj’ resolution by Pandit Nehru at the Lahore  Congress.
1931 A.D.            Ist Indian talki film ’Alam Ara’  by Dada Phalke.
1947 A.D. ( 22nd July )Indian National Flag was adopted.
1948 A.D.            Mahatma Gandhi assassinated.
1949 A.D.            India constitution was signed and adopted .  
1950 A.D.India become a Sovereign Democratic Republic (26th January ) .  
1951 A.D.            Asian Games held in Delhi , First five year Plan commenced ( Ist April ) .  
1952 A.D.            Ist General Elections .  
1953 A.D.            Conquest of Mount Everest .  
1954 A.D.            Pancha Shila accepted by China and India at Badung conference .
1966 A.D.            Taskent Agreement between India and Pakistan ( signed by P.M. Lal Bahadur Shastri and President Ayub Khan ) .
1974 A.D.            Underground Nuclear Explosion carried out at Pokhran.  
1975 A.D.            Indian Satellite ‘Aryabhatta’ goes into orbit.  
Important Dates in Indian History

Important Dates in World History

776 B.C.First Olympiad in Greece .  
55 B.C.                 Invasion of Britain by Julius Caesars ( a Roman General ) .  
4 B.C.    Assumed Birth of Jesus Christ.  
29 B.C. Crucification of Jesus Christ.  
622 B.C.               Flight of Mohammed from Macca to Madina .  
1215 B.C.Magna Carta ( or the Great Charter ) signed by King John II which is the foundation  stone of the rights and liberties of the English people.  
1338 A.D.The Hundred year war ( between English & France ) broke out.  
1492 A.D.Discovery of America by Columbus.  
1776 A.D.Formation of U.S.A.  
1805 A.D.            Battle of Trafalgar – Lord Nelson ( UK ) defeated the Combined French and Spanish forces.  
1815 A.D.            Battle of Waterloo – Duke of Wellington ( U.K. ) defeated Napoleon ( French ) and Napoleon was  exiled to St. Halena.  
1914 A.D.Outbreak of world War I which ended in 1918 .
1917 A.D.Revolution in Russia , Lenin came to power.
1919 A.D.            Treaty of Versailles which terminated Word War I.  
1920  A.D.League of Nations’ founded .  
1939  A.D.Outbreak of World War II which ended in 1945 .  
1961  A.D.Russia sent Yuri Gagarin  into space in Vostok I , America launched Alan Shephard  into space .
1963  A.D.Ist Woman, Volentina Tereshkowa ( USSR ) sent into space .
1969 A.D.Ist human landing on moon by Americans .  
Important Dates in World History

Important Battles in Indian History

Battle of Hydaspes ( Jhelum ) 326 B.C.Alexandar’s invasion of India . Porus was defeated .
War against Seleukas ( 305 B.C. )Chandra Gupta Maurya defeated Seleukas Nikator who invaded India
Battle of Kalinga ( 261 B.C.)Ashoka defeated the King of Kalinga, After this war Ashoka renounced all wars in future .
Battle of Thanesar ( 1014 A.D.)Mahmud Ghazni defeated the Hindus.
Battle of Tarain                In the first Battle of Panipath ( 1526 AD ) Babur defeated Ibrahim Lodhi and founded Mughal Empire in India.   In the second Battle of Panipath (1556 AD.) Akbar defeated Hemu ( the Hindu General of Muhammad Shah Adil ) .   In the third Battle of Panipath ( 1761 AD ) Ahmad Shah Abdali defeated the Marathas.    
Battle of Khanwah (1527 AD)Babur defeated Rana Sanga of Mewar .
Battle of Talikota ( 1565 AD )Rama Raja ( the ruler of Vijayanagar ) was defeated by the allied forces of Ahmedanagar, Golkunda and Bidar.
Battle of Haldighati ( 1576 A.D )Rana Pratap ( Mewar )  was defeated by Mohammad Shah and Massacred the citizens of Delhi by his forces .
Battle of Wandiwash (1760 A.D.)The dream of the French to establish their rule in India was finally shattered as the British defeated them in this battle .
Battle of Buxar (1774 A.D.)This battle consolidated the Company rule in Bengal. The English forces led by  Munro defeated both Mir Kasim and Nawab Wazir in Oudh .  
Important Battles in Indian History

General Knowledge Study Material Part 1

General Knowledge Study Material Part 2

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