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Indian History

What UPSC says?

History of India and Indian National Movement

About the subject:

UPSC has worded the vastest subject in the syllabus in just 7 words. This though does not undermine the significance of the portion from the Prelims and Mains stand point.

History can be divided into three areas – Ancient India, Medieval India and Modern India.

The vastness of the subject matter requires an aspirant to play it smart. A quick glance would reveal that much of the questions have centered on the National Movement (stress on 1857 till 1947) and hence one needs to prioritize this section more, followed by Ancient India and then Medieval India.

One must remember that emphasis should be laid on the timelines and not the exact dates. (So one need not focus on mugging up dates). The purposes and consequences of various events are also to be understood in detail.

The relevance of the subject:

The growth of a nation, the political and economic systems, phases of transition are all essential to be known for an aspirant. This will help in developing a better understanding of the current and prevalent scenario as well as knowing the reasons for the same. History, thus, is a subject offering multiple intangible benefits.


History too has found amply space in the UPSC Preliminary exams. The only static component in the syllabus – these questions are sure shot if the candidate gives a sound reading of the subject a few times focusing on the details.


  1. A Brief History of Modern India – Spectrum
  2. History of Modern India – Bipin Chandra
  3. Ancient India – R.S. Sharma or Ancient India – Makkan Lal