Declassification of files : Unveiling Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose

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Today nation is paying it's homage to freedom fighter Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose on his 119th birth anniversary today. Beginning today, the declassification of files relating to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose that are available with Central authorities will commence.There is great deal of excitement among the folks on what  these so-far hidden documents will reveal about the legendary freedom-fighter — both on his life and death.  There is lot of anticipation among the and mainly because  Netaji has been the subject of much and often contradictory speculation and it is said that the material in the files could embarrass parties and their renowned faces  and compel historians to re-write their stuff on the Indian freedom movement

The brusque treatment that he has received in history books which generations of Indians have read and come to believe, has led to people developing a distorted view about Netaji’s contribution to the struggle for independence. He has largely been projected as some sort of a failed aspirant to the pre-eminent position that Jawaharlal Nehru enjoyed, both within the Congress and in public eye. This, according to historians down the line, resulted in Netaji revolting and leaving the Congress, to form his own outfit and chart a different if controversial path to free India from British rule.

But, the conventional theory was  tested at the hands of bipartisan academics, who began to question the conventional positions and offer a fresh perspective that not only suggested to Netaji’s elevated status in the independence struggle but also raised questions over the methods the Congress led by the Nehru-Gandhis used to undermine and subsequently play down his contribution, it became clear that the old narrative was losing merit.

Declassification of the files : A way to unveil Netaji

The problem was: How to then establish, beyond offering personal opinions, facts that would cast Netaji in the image that he deserved? The declassification of the files will serve this purpose. Hopefully, it will reveal the political interplay that went on between prominent players including Nehru, Netaji, Mahatma Gandhi and others, during the years leading to the country’s freedom. It should through the course also, therefore, lead one to a better understanding of the monumental role that Netaji had played in the freedom struggle. It is immaterial if certain political parties are uncomfortable with this prospect, because history cannot be veiled for long.

It is also expected — though one is not too sure of it — that the declassification of files will offer greater clarity on the mystery surrounding Netaji’s death. While the freedom-fighter’s grand-nephew Ashish Ray has posted material on the Internet which offers “irrefutable evidence” that Netaji had died in the plane crash of August 18, 1945, in Taiwan, and Netaji’s daughter too believes that indeed her father had perished in that crash (and that “asinine” theories such as that he may still be alive, should be discarded), there are other members of the family who question the plane crash theory with their own ‘facts’. 

In any case, whether he died in the August 18 accident or thereafter, remains at best an issue of calendar accuracy which the declassified files may settle. What is more relevant is the political aspect; on how the Congress and its iconic leaders treated him and whether the party indeed spied on certain members of the Bose family (and if so, why) long after it had ‘formally’ accepted Netaji’s death.

Source :The Pioneer

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