Netaji’s grand nephew to meet Modi in Germany to seek declassification of files

Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose’s grand nephew would meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Germany on Monday to demand declassification of files relating to the freedom fighter’s mysterious disappearance in 1945.

Surya Kumar Bose, also the President of the Indo-German Association in Hamburg, has been invited by the Indian embassy to attend a reception in Berlin on the occasion of Modi’s visit to Germany.

Netaji’s grand nephew Chandra Bose said his brother would raise the issue of declassification of files during the meeting.

“The time has now come to declassify Netaji files. Saying it would affect India’s relations with other nations is simply a lame excuse. The Modi government has been talking of transparency and now it is the time to provide transparency by releasing those files which will tell us what happened to Netaji during his last years,” Bose told PTI here.

In an RTI reply, the Prime Minister’s Office has refused to declassify secret files relating to Netaji arguing that the “disclosure would prejudicially affect relation with foreign countries.”

When under house arrest by the British, Netaji had escaped from India in 1941 to seek international support for India’s freedom struggle. After organising the Indian National Army with Japanese help he went missing in 1945, giving birth to India’s most debated and puzzling mystery.

He was last seen at Bangkok Airport on August 17, 1945.

The Mukherjee Commission formed by the Centre had rejected the opinion that he died in a plane crash in Taiwan on August 18, 1945.

The Intelligence Bureau files declassified recently said Bose’s close relatives were spied upon for 20 years between 1948 and 1968. Nehru was Prime Minister for 16 of these 20 years.

The files, now with the National Archives, said the Bose family homes in the city were kept under surveillance.

Bose had quit Congress before Independence over differences with Nehru and Mahatma Gandhi and launched an organised military resistance against the British after raising the Indian National Army.