NCERT Solutions for class 10th Social Science chapter 10 political science power sharing


Question 1. What are the different forms of power sharing in modern democracies? Give an example of each of these.

Answer:  In modern democracies, the following are some of the important power sharing arrangements –

  1. Power Sharing among the Different Organs of Government ( i e . ., Horizontal distribution of power) In this form of power sharing, power is assigned by the Constitution among different organs of government such as the legislature, executive, and judiciary. This type of distribution ensures separation of powers among the organs at the same level, so that none of the organs can exercise unlimited power. Each organ puts a check on the others in order to maintain in balance of power under the system of checks and balances. This arrangement is as below in India.

2. Power Sharing among Governments at Different Levels (Vertical distribution of power sharing)

In this form of power sharing , power is shared at the different levels of government. The overall governing body for the country is known as ‘Union Government’ or ‘Federal Government’ and the government at the constituent units is known as State Government. The third or lowest level is local government, i.e., Mynicipalities and Panchayats (in India).

3. Power Sharing among Political Parties, Pressure Groups and Movements In a democracy, power is also shared among different political parties, pressure groups and movements. Democra cy provides the citizens a freedom to choose their rulers. This freedom is provided by various political parties which contest electi ons to win them. Such competition ensures that power is not always in th e hand of a single person. 

In the long run, power is shared among different political parties that represent different ideologies and social groups. Sometimes es 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. In a democracy, various pressure groups and movements also remain active. They will also have an indirect share in government power, either through participation in government committees or bringing influence on the decision making process. An example is the currently running UPA Government in India, which is coalition government.

3. Power Sharing among Different Social Groups In a democracy, especially, in multiethnic society, power is also shared among social groups such as religious and linguistic groups. ‘Community Government’ in Belgium is a good example of this arrangement. There are constitutional and legal arrangements in India whereby socially weaker sections and women are represented in the legislatures and administration. We have a system of ‘reserved constituencies’ in State Assemblies and the Parliament. This type of arrangement is meant to give proper share in the government and administration to diverse social groups who otherwise would feel alienated from the government.

Question 2. State one prudential reason and one moral reason for power sharing with an example from the Indian context. 

Answer: The prudential reason for power sharing is good because it helps to reduce the possibility of conflict between social groups. In India, seats have been reserved in the legislature for the socially weaker sections, keeping in mind this prudential reason for power sharing. One more example of power sharing of moral reason is decentralization of powers in India. The moral reason for power sharing in India has an example in India, as it is a democratic country. People have a right to be consulted on how they are to be governed. Thus, the citizens have a stake in governance by having the power to vote in elections to select the people to govern them. This in turn, puts pressure on the government to govern them. This, in turn, puts pressure on the government to rethink its policies and reconsider its decisions. This active political participation is the moral reason for power sharing.

Question 3. After reading this chapter, three students drew different conclusions. Which of these do you agree with and why? Give your reasons in about 50 words.

  1. Thommam Power sharing is necessary only in societies which have religious, linguistic, or ethnic divisions.
  2. Mathayi Power sharing is suited only for big countries that have regional divisions.
  3. Ouseph Every society needs some form of power sharing even if they are small or do not have social divisions.

Answer: We are agreed with Ouseph because every society needs power sharing even if they are small or do not have social divisions . A democratic system of government ensures that the citizens acquire a stake in the system by active participation. It prevents conflict between different groups in society while promoting belongingness. It helps to maintain a balance of power among various institutions and helps check how this power is exercised. People will be more satisfied when they have a say in the functioning and decision making process in the system.

Question 4. The Mayor of Merchtem, a town near Brussels in Belgium, has defended a ban on speaking French in the town’s schools. He said that the ban would help all non-Dutch speakers integrate in this Flemish town. Do you think that this measure is in keeping with the spirit of Belgium’s power-sharing arrangements? Give your reasons in about 50 words.

Answer: No, the measure taken by the Mayor of Merchtem is not in keeping with the spirit of Belgium’s power sharing arrangement. As 59 % of the population in the Flemish region speak Dutch language, the ban on speaking French in the town’s schools would prevent French and Dutch speakers to mingle with each other, and also create feelings of distrust and suspicion.

The ban ignores the regional differences and cultural diversities. It is against the spirit of accommodating every linguistic group , and creating the right environment for everyone to live in. In fact, it makes the ground for civic strife, and a possible division of the community on linguistic lines.

Question 5. Read the following passage and pick out any one of the prudential reasons for power sharing offered in this.

“We need to give more power to the panchayats to realise the dream of Mahatma Gandhi and the hopes of the makers of our Constitution. Panchayati Raj establishes true democracy. It restores power to the only place where power belongs in a democracy in the hands of the people. Giving power to Panchayats is also a way to reduce corruption and increase administrative efficiency. When people participate in the planning and implementation of developmental schemes, they would naturally exercise greater control over these schemes. This would eliminate the corrupt middlemen. Thus, the Panchayati Raj will strengthen the foundations of our democracy.”

Answer: Power sharing has the following prudential reasons which are cited in the passage-reducing corruption by giving power into the hands of the people and thus, making them responsible for their own decisions. This increases the administrative efficiency by delegating the decision making function to the people affected by it and also improving the efficiency of the system by reducing the number of middlemen, as well as transferring the planning and implementation to the people concerned through panchayats.

Question 6. Different arguments are usually put forth in favour of and against power sharing. Identify those which are in favour of power sharing and select the answer using the codes given below? Power sharing Power Sharing.

A. reduces conflict among different communities.

B. decreases the possibility of arbitrariness.

C. delays decision-making process.

D. accommodates diversities.

 E. increases instability and divisiveness.

F. promotes people’s participation in government

G. undermines the unity of a country 

(a) A, B, D, F (b) A, C, E, F (c) A, B, D, G (d) B, C, D, G

Answer (a).

Question 7. Consider the following statements about power sharing arrangements in Belgium and Sri Lanka.

A. In Belgium the Dutch speaking majority people tried to impose their domination on the minority French-speaking community.

B. In Sri Lanka the policies of government ensured the dominance of the Sinhala speaking majority.

C. The Tamils in Sri Lanka demanded a federal arrangement of power sharing to protect their culture, language and equality of opportunity in education and jobs. 

D. The transformation of Belgium from a unitary government to a federal one prevented a possible division of the country on linguistic lines.

Which of the statements given are correct? 

(a) A, B, C and D  (b) A, B and D (c) C and D (d) B, C and D

Answer: (a).

Question 8. Match List I (Forms of power sharing) with List II (Forms of government) and select the correct answer using the codes given below the lists.

Question 9. Consider the following two statements on power sharing. 

A. Power sharing is good for democracy. 

B. It helps to reduce the possibility of conflict between social groups.

Which of the statements given above are true and false?

(a) A is true but B is false 

(b) Both A and B are true

(c) Both A and B are false

(d) A is false but B is true

Answer: (b).

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