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It’s only hypocrisy, pretence on Netaji, unless you bring back his mortal remains: Ashis Ray

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New Delhi, Jan 23 (IANS) This tripping over each other to pay homage to Subhas Bose is mere hypocrisy, says Ashish Ray, the London based author who wrote the book, Laid to Rest, which comprehensively and with documentary evidence establishes the circumstances of Subhas Boses death (on 18 August 1945 in Taipei following a plane crash), cremation and transportation and preservation of his mortal remains in Tokyo.

In an interview with IANS, Ray says it’s a hypocrisy and pretence to pay homage to Netaji, if you do not have the decency to pay homage to his mortal remains — lying in Tokyo for over 75 years — by bringing these to India.

Ray adds, “I don’t think Subhas Bose has been an emotive factor in West Bengal elections in the past. Congress, the Left and Trinamool Congress, who have been in government in the state since Independence have never won in the name of Netaji”.

Q: There is intense competition among political parties to pay homage to Netaji this year?

A: It appears political parties are tripping over each other to pay homage to Subhas Bose.

It’s a hypocrisy and pretence to pay homage to Netaji, if you do not have the decency to pay homage to his mortal remains — lying in Tokyo for over 75 years — by bringing these to India. It is his daughter and sole heir Professor Anita Bose Pfaff’s fervent desire that the remains touch Indian soil — for it was her father’s ambition to see India free — and that there be a final disposal in the Bengal Hindu tradition of an immersion in the River Ganga.

Q: How emotive is Netaji for the Bengal election?

A: I don’t think Subhas Bose has been an emotive factor in West Bengal elections in the past. Congress, the Left and Trinamool Congress, who have been in government in the state since Independence have never won in the name of Netaji.

BJP, with its sectarian politics, is the very anti-thesis of Bose. He always clashed with Hindu Mahasabha, which fathered Jan Sangh, now BJP.

Q: What is the best way to pay homage to him?

A: The best way to pay homage to Subhas Bose is by bringing his mortal remains to India.

Q: Why are his mortal remains not being brought back?

A: You will have to ask Government of India why.

Central government declassified files pertaining to Subhas Bose. The files incontrovertibly ratified the facts. These were reiterated in an RTI reply by the Modi government. The Japanese government is waiting for a request. So, what is stopping the Government of India from bringing the remains to India? It seems continuing to fool the Indian public pays political dividends.

Q: Is Netaji being remembered by political parties due to the Bengal elections?

A: Your guess is as good as mine.

Q: The committee formed for his anniversary. What should be it’s recommendations?

A: There is from what I can make out competing committees. One created by Narendra Modi and another created by Mamata Banerjee. Subhas Bose belonged to the Indian National Congress. He was twice elected its president. Yet, Congress is lagging behind. Perhaps, this is no bad thing. It is at least not indulging in naked opportunism.

–IANS

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