Sri Subhas Chandra Bose, popularly known as “Netaji”, was born 124 years ago in Cuttack, Orrisa on Jan 23rd in 1897. Netaji is considered by a significant portion of Indians to have been instrumental — more than M. K. Gandhi MHRH — in getting the British to give up India. Be that as it may, it is undeniable that he was one of the greatest leaders of India in the last century.
His biography is quite well researched and generally known. There’s also an unfinished autobiography which covers the period from his birth to 1921 which Bose titled “An Indian Pilgrim.”
But his disappearance and death is shrouded in mystery, conspiracy and intrigue. There’s a veritable cottage industry that thrives on the idea that he did not really die in a plane crash in Taiwan in 1945 but that he lived in India for decades as a recluse ascetic. Continue reading
“Who Killed Bose: Mystery behind Netaji’s Death”.
Public talk by Anuj Dhar. Author and researcher of events connected to Netaji’s life and times. Students, professionals and anyone interested in the history of post-independence India are welcome to the talk.
About Anuj Dhar (wiki): Indian author and former journalist, Dhar has published several books on the death of Subhas Chandra Bose which (according to official and academic views) occurred on 18 August 1945, when a Japanese plane carrying him crashed in Japanese-occupied Taiwan. Dhar claims in his books that there was no air crash and that Bose actually died in the 1980s after living as hermit monk named “Gumnami Baba Bhagwanji” in Faizabad. Dhar is also the founder-trustee of New Delhi-based not for profit organisation Mission Netaji.
The event is free.
Sep 23, 2017, 10 AM to Noon.
Venue: Symbiosis Institute of Management Studies [SIMS]
Range Hills Road, Khadki, Near Military Hospital, Pune – 411020, India
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Post script: I have no interest in the matter. Perhaps NSCB died in 1945 or maybe he did not. I am not familiar with Anuj Dhar’s work. But I am mystified by one thing: why would NSCB do what Dhar claims he did? If he indeed was alive all those decades when Nehru and his spawn ruled India, why did he not oppose their misgovernance? For all the effect he had over those years that Dhar claims NSCB was alive, it basically amounts to the same thing as he having perished in a plane crash. In fact Gamnami Baba Bhagwanji appears to have had the same impact on India as I had over those years — namely zero.
“Netaji could have taken us past China” — the TOI quotes Infosys chief mentor N R Narayana Murthy. Here’s a bit.
Netaji Bose was born on this day in 1897. When and where he died is a mystery. The airbrushing of his image from the consciousness of Indians bears testimony to M K Gandhi’s success in crushing his opponents. Gandhi appointed Nehru as his successor and the rest is, as they say, history.
Gandhi cast a very long shadow on India. Mao is supposed to have replied, when asked about his opinion of the French revolution, “It is too early to tell.” The official line in India — and therefore the line parroted by the vast majority of ‘educated’ Indians — is that Gandhi was a prime factor in India gaining political independence. I think it is too early to tell whether Gandhi was good for India or not. But give it a few more decades and I am confident that Gandhi’s image will undergo a radical transformation. Satyam eva, as the old Sanskrit saying (which is India’s motto) goes, jayatey. Truth alone prevails. Eventually.
Update: Thanks to all those who pointed out that the title of the post was incorrect. I have changed the “Jan 13th” to “Jan 23rd.”
Thanks to rahushar for correcting my incorrect transcription of “satyam eva jayate.”
My younger brother’s daughter shares her birthday today, 23rd Jan, with David Hilbert who was born in 1862. Hilbert compiled a list of 23 unsolved problems in mathematics in 1900. “This is generally reckoned the most successful and deeply considered compilation of open problems ever to be produced by an individual mathematician.” Hmm. Born 23rd Jan; compiled 23 problems. Coincidence? I think not. 🙂
What is the real story behind the disappearance of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose? Why should we–60 years after the event–care about what happened? Who was he and does it really matter?
I think that there is a deep mystery and the solution of that mystery may have profound implications in our understanding of our own history. Only recently I have started to learn something of the issue and I wrote about it last month. Desh Kapoor recently pointed me to a site that could serve as the starting point for educating ourselves about who Bose was and the mystery surrounding his disappearance: Mission Netaji: Missing in Action Since 1945.
Didn’t know much about history, Indian or otherwise when I was in school. I went to a missionary school and I recall reading about English history (King Arthur comes to mind) and a bit about Indian history (Chattrapati Shivaji figured along with all sorts of Mughal emperors) but there was no attempt at communicating what I call a sense of history or instilling a spirit of inquiry about the history of India. My school did alright when it come to science and mathematics, but failed dismally in the social sciences.