The death of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, a prominent leader of India’s freedom struggle, has been shrouded in mystery and controversy for decades. The circumstances of his death are still the subject of many theories and suppositions despite the passage of time. This article aims to examine the various viewpoints surrounding Netaji’s passing while emphasizing the crucial incidents that surround this historical enigma.
Background and Disappearance
Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, a charismatic and determined freedom fighter, was a key figure in India’s struggle for independence from British colonial rule. However, during the Second World War in 1941, he chose a different path, seeking support from Axis powers like Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan in his fight to liberate India. After that, Bose left India and set off on a dangerous voyage, ultimately disappearing in 1945 for an unknown reason.
The Taihoku Air Crash Theory
One of the predominant theories surrounding Netaji’s death is the Taihoku Airfield Theory. Supported by the Japanese government, it suggests that Bose died in a tragic plane crash in Taihoku (now Taipei), Taiwan, on August 18, 1945. According to this theory, the overloaded Mitsubishi Ki-21 bomber carrying Bose crashed soon after takeoff, claiming his life. However, this explanation has faced significant scrutiny, with several experts questioning its authenticity due to conflicting accounts and inadequate evidence.
The Gumnami Baba Mystery
One of the most curious aspects of the Netaji death mystery revolves around the enigmatic figure known as Gumnami Baba. It was widely reported in the 1970s that Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose may have been an ascetic residing in Faizabad, Uttar Pradesh. Many believed Bose actually survived the purported plane disaster and took on this new name to live alone. But despite significant research and repeated inquiries, the truth of Gumnami Baba’s genuine identity is still unknown.
The Khosla Commission and Bose Family’s belief
The 1970-established Khosla Commission came to the opposite conclusion and supported the Taihoku Air Crash Theory. The Bose family, who had consistently claimed that Netaji had lived in secrecy and survived the crash, remained unpersuaded. To learn the truth about Bose’s death, family members have persistently pushed for the declassification of classified information and documents.
The Mukherjee Commission Report
In 1999, the Indian government appointed former Supreme Court judge Manoj Kumar Mukherjee to investigate Netaji’s death in response to a court order. The Mukherjee Commission Report came out in 2006, dismissed the Taihoku Air Crash Theory, and supported the possibility that Netaji did not die in the plane crash. While the report sparked public interest, it also drove discussions among historians and academics, with some raising concerns about the accuracy of the material provided.
The Need for Closure
Decades after Netaji’s disappearance, the search for the truth still captivates the Indian people. His death’s mystery evokes strong emotional responses, making it a topic of national significance. Many think that solving this mystery is important for historical truth as well as giving the country and the Bose family closure.