Declassify government files on Netaji, says family

Kolkata, Jan 22 (IANS) Claiming that over 100 secret files on Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose were with various government departments, including the PMO, Netaji's family members and researchers Tuesday threatened to launch a mass movement if the documents are not declassified and made public at the earliest.

"The government of India has been sitting over 100 secret known and unknown files on Netaji. The PMO alone has 33 such files and the ministry of external affairs has over a dozen," said author and researcher Anuj Dhar.

Dhar, who has written "India's Biggest Cover-up" on the death mystery of Netaji, claimed that even spy agencies Research and Analysis Wing and Intelligence Bureau had scores of such files.

"One hand the government has always been maintaining that Netaji died in the 1945 plane crash and on the other it refuses to declassify secret files regarding him. Why is this contradiction? The government at the earliest must make the documents public," said D.N. Bose, Netaji's nephew.

Bose and Dhar quoted several documents and RTI replies to buttress their claims, and said only a nationwide mass movement can compel the government to make the documents public.

Quoting the Mukherjee Commission report which said that Bose did not die in the plane crash as alleged and the ashes in the Japanese temple are not of Netaji, Chitra Ghosh, niece of Netaji urged people to foil the alleged attempt of the government in establishing the contrary.

"Why the centre is trying to establish that Netaji died in 1945 plane crash? Why there are attempts to bring the alleged ashes from Renkoji temple?" asked Ghosh.

Netaji's daughter Anita Pfaff Jan 20 had rubbished media reports that she would be bringing her "father's ashes" to India.

A branch of Netaji's family as also many others outside believe that he died in a plane crash in Taiwan on Aug 18, 1945, and the ashes are preserved in the Renkoji temple in Tokyo. But there is also a strong second opinion across the nation which nixes the aircrash theory and does not consider the Renkoji ashes as those of Bose.

"I don't have the ashes. After all, this would be a highly formal and diplomatic thing. It's not a private issue, but involves two countries that have their own multiple-level relations. It's not that I'll go to the temple ask for the ashes and they will give me. The two nations must agree on it," Pfaff had said.

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