Bring Netaji’s remains back to India, says his daughter

Tribune News Service

Shubhadeep Choudhury

New Delhi, August 15

Anita Bose Pfaff, daughter of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, has appealed to bring “home” the remains purportedly belonging to her father kept at Renkoji Temple in Tokyo, Japan.

“Nothing in his life was more important to Netaji than his country’s independence. There was nothing that he longed for more than living in an India, free of foreign rule! Since he did not live to experience the joy of freedom, it is time that at least his remains can return to Indian soil”, Pfaff, an academic who lives in Germany, said in a press statement today.

Pfaff wrote that as Netaji’s only child she feels obliged to ensure that her father’s dearest wish, to return to his country in freedom, will at last be fulfilled in this form and appropriate ceremonies to honour him will be performed.

Anita noted that driven by admiration and love for Netaji, many in India refuse to believe that he died in an aeroplane accident on August 18, 1945 and will one day return to his independent motherland.

“But today we have access to the originally classified inquiries of 1945 and 1946. They show that Netaji died in a foreign country on that day. Japan has provided a temporary home to Netaji at Renkoji Temple in Tokyo, cared for in devotion by three generations of priests and the Japanese people,” the statement read.

Anita suggested carrying out DNA tests of the remains to set at rests doubts about Netaji’s death in the plane accident. Justice Mukherjee Commission of Inquiry has mentioned that the priests of Renkoji Temple as well as the Japanese Government are agreeable to DNA testing of the remains, she wrote.

“75 years after India was able to throw off the shackles of colonial rule, the three states that were established on the Indian subcontinent celebrate the anniversary of the event. One of the most prominent heroes of the independence struggle, Subhas Chandra Bose, however, has not returned to his motherland as yet,” Bose’s daughter wrote.

Pfaff added that all Indians, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis, who can now live in freedom, constitute Bose’s family. “I salute you all as my brothers and sisters! And I invite you to support my efforts to bring Netaji home.”

In the statement, Anita Bose Pfaff also mentions that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will unveil a statue of Netaji at India Gate, Delhi, today on the occasion of Independence Day. This function, however, is expected to take place on a future date.