Class 7 Civics Chapter 1 – On Equality

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CBSE Class 7 NCERT Civics Chapter 1 – On Equality (Questions and Answers)

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Class 7 Civics Chapter 1 – On Equality


Q.1 In a democracy, why is a universal adult franchise important?

Answer: In a democracy, a universal adult franchise is very important, as it is based on the idea of equality. It states that every adult (those who are 18 and above) in a country have the right to vote, irrespective of their social and economic backgrounds. Every vote has equal value.

Q.2 Read the box on Article 15 and state two ways in which the article addresses inequality.

Answer: Article 15 of the Indian Constitution – Prohibition of discrimination on ground of religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth.

1.      The State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them.

2.      No Citizen shall, on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them, be subject to any disability, liability, restriction or condition with regard to –

a.       Access to shops, public restaurants, hotels and places of public entertainment; or

b.      The use of wells, tanks, bathing ghats, roads and places of public resort maintained wholly or partly out of State funds or dedicated to the use of the general public.

The above provision of Article 15 clearly addresses inequality in terms of discrimination based on religion, race, caste, sex (gender), place of birth, etc

Q.3 In what ways was Omprakash Valmiki’s experience similar to that of the Ansaris?

Answer: Case – 1: Omprakash Valmiki (a Dalit School boy) had to sit away from others in the class and that too on the floor. He had to sit behind everybody, just near the door. Sometimes his friends beat him without any reason. When he was in Class IV, the headmaster asked Omprakash to sweep the whole school and the playground.

Case- 2: Mr and Mrs Ansari were looking for an apartment in the city and for that purpose they contacted a Property Dealer. They had the money and so paying the rent was no problem. They found a suitable apartment and everything was just at the final stage, the Landlady found their names (Ansari) and made an excuse that she could not rent the house to someone who ate meat because the building did not have any non-vegetarian residents. Both the Ansaris and Property Dealer were surprised to hear this because they could smell fish being cooked in the neighbour’s house. The same excuse was repeated by other Landlords. Finally, the Property Dealer suggested Ansaris to change their names as Mr and Mrs Kumar.

Conclusion: - In case 1 Omprakash Valmiki was discriminated against on account of his religion. In case 2 Mr and Mrs Ansari’s were discriminated against on account of their religion. Here the core similarity is that both were discriminated and not treated equally. When persons are treated unequally, their Dignity is violated. Article 15 of the Indian Constitution clearly states that discriminate against on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them is strictly prohibited.

Q.4 What do you understand by the term “all personnel are equal before the law”? Why do you think it is important in a democracy?

Answer: The term “all persons are equal before the law” states that all citizens, irrespective of their social or economic background, have to obey the same laws. No person shall be discriminated against in the eyes of the law on the grounds of religion, race, caste, sex (gender), place of birth, etc.

The very spirit of democracy is the idea of equality, as it gives equality and recognition to all. From the President of India (Droupadi Murmu) to a Domestic Worker (Kanta Devi) all are equal in the eye of law.

Q.5 The Government of India passed the Disabilities Act in 1995. This law states that persons with disabilities have equal rights and that the government should make possible their full participation. The government has to provide free education and integrate children with disabilities into mainstream schools. This law also states that all public spaces, including buildings, schools etc., should be accessible and provided with ramps.

Look at the photograph and think about the boy who is being carried with the stair. Do you think that the law stated above is being implemented in this regard? What needs to be done to make the building accessible?

Answer: It is clearly visible that the boy in the photograph is disabled. As per the Disabilities Act 1995, the building should have been accessible to him. But the law is not being enforced here. In fact, it can be quite dangerous for him to be carried down by the security guards. The boy’s dignity is overlooked here. He may morally feel inferior. To overcome this situation, the Disabilities Act 1995 should be implemented and government can build a ramp along the stairs of every building. By doing this, those with physical disabilities can have easy accessibility.


1. What is Joothan about?
Answer: It is about the bitter experiences of growing up of a dalit boy.

2. What suggestion was given to Ansaris by the property dealer?
Answer: They were suggested to change their names and call themselves Mr and Mrs kumar

3. On what basis were the Ansaris treated unequally?
Ans. The Ansaris were treated unequally on the basis of religion.

4. What do you mean by ‘dignity’?
Answer: Dignity means thinking of one self and others as worthy of self-respect.

5. What are the two ways in which the government has tried to implement the equality that guaranteed in the constitution?
Answer: (i) Through laws
(ii) Through government programmes or schemes to help unprivileged groups.

6. Who have been employed to cook the meal under midday meal scheme?
Answer: Dalit women have been employed for this purpose.

7. How did B.R. Ambedkar view self-respect?
Answer: B.R. Ambedkar viewed self-respect as the most vital factor in life, without which man was cipher.

8. What was the condition of the African-Americans in the United States of America prior to 1950s?  
Answer: Prior to 1950’s, the African-Americans were treated extremely unequally in the USA and denied equality through law.

9. What is known as the Civil Rights Movements?  
Answer: A movement took place in the USA in the late 1950’s to push for equal rights for African-Americans. This movement later came to be known as Civil Rights Movement.


1. What is it that makes Kanta unsure?
Answer: Kanta is a poor domestic worker. She lives in a slum which is very filthy. Her daughter is sick but she cannot skip work because she needs to borrow money from her employers to take her daughter to the doctor. Her job as a domestic help is not a permanent. She can be removed by her employers any time.

2. Mention two different kinds of inequalities that exist in our country. Give examples.  
Answer: Two different kinds of inequalities that exist in our country are—inequalities based on the caste system and that based on the religion.
Omprakash Valmiki was treated extremely unequally because he was a dalit. In school, his headmaster made him sweep the school and the playground.
The Ansaris were treated unequally on the basis differences of religion. They were looking to rent an apartment in the city. They were about to take an apartment at the first sight. But the moment the land lady knew their names she declined to rent the house.

3. Write a note on equality in Indian democracy.  
Answer: The Indian constitution recognises all persons as equals. This means that every individual in the country irrespective of his/her caste, religion, educational and economic backgrounds is recognised as equal. Although, inequality still exists in the country, yet the principle of the equality of all persons is recognised. While earlier no law existed to protect people from discrimination and ill treatment now there are several that work to see that people are treated with dignity.

4. Write a brief note on the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Answer: The Civil Rights Act was passed in the year 1964. The Act prohibited discrimination on the basis of race, religion or national origin. It also stated that all schools would be open to African-American children and that they would no longer have to attend separate schools specially set up for them. However, a majority of African-Americans continue to be among the poorest in the country.

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