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Netaji files

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  14 Jan 2016 12:00 AM GMT

From January 23 this year, the birth anniversary of Subhas Chandra Bose, the Central government will begin unveiling the secret files related to Netaji. This was announced by Prime Minister rendra Modi last October at a meeting with Netaji’s extended family. The declassified files are expected to shed light on the question whether he survived the plane crash in Taipei on August 18 in 1945. Much has been written about the ‘State secrecy’ around Netaji’s disappearance, about conspiracy theories that the government of independent India under Jawaharlal Nehru continued to snoop on his family. Books have been published about this purported cover-up, queries have been filed under RTI since 2005 seeking facts about Netaji. Some believe that the great leader and patriot did not die in the plane crash at all, that he returned secretly to independent India and lived the life of a sannyasi. Recently, a photograph supposedly showing Netaji in 1966 sharing space with Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shashtri and Soviet leaders in Taskhent, set off yet another round of feverish speculation. A British website has lately released what it claims are eyewitness accounts of the Taiwan plane crash along with British intelligence reports. However, the declassification of the ‘Netaji files’ may not match up to expectations. Observers have pointed out that the Justice Manoj Mukherjee Commission from 1999 to 2006 went into detail in all the 33 files on Netaji that are to be declassified now. Not more than 10 files are said to relate to his disappearance, but the commission did not find anything noteworthy then. Netaji’s grand-nephew, noted historian and presently Trimool MP Sugata Bose believes that the endless controversy on Netaji’s mortal end is a ‘terrible distraction from his real legacy’, that his life is more important and fasciting than the legend. India was born thanks to the epic struggle of a host of patriots and freedom fighters. If in that struggle, Indians were led by Mahatma Gandhi, Pandit Nehru and Sardar Patel, another path of supreme courage and sacrifice was blazed by Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose against overwhelming odds. The time is nigh for Indians to fill up this gap in their knowledge and properly appreciate Netaji’s legacy.

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