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TMC urges centre to declassify all files, book on Netaji, Azad Hind Fauj

TMC urges centre to declassify all files, book on Netaji, Azad Hind Fauj

Netaji, like many Bengali icons, has been a major talking point ahead of the polls with both BJP and TMC trying to emerge as the better servant of his cause.

Amid the tug of war between parties to appropriate one Bengali icon after another to achieve political gain, Trinamool Congress on Wednesday asked the BJP-led Centre for de- classification of “Netaji files”.

TMC Rajya Sabha MP Sukhendu Sekhar Ray said that the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), defence ministry and several intelligence wings of the government still hold many files that haven’t been brought to public.

“Yesterday, I sent a letter to the Prime Minister which PMO has accepted. I forwarded a copy to honourable Defence Minister Rajnath Singh as well. I had sent a similar letter four years ago as well. But nothing was done,” Ray said at a press conference in Kolkata.

Apart from asking for declassification of all the files related to the freedom fighter, he also urged the Defence Ministry to make public the book ‘A History of Indian National Army 1942-45’ which was published by its ‘History Division’.

“The book, which contains unknown facts and information about the Azad Hind Fauj during their revolution from 1942 to 1945, has never seen the light of day,” the Parliamentarian said.

Ray even alleged that like the UPA government, Narendra Modi-led NDA has also refused to publish the books, despite a single bench of Delhi High Court asking the Centre to do that following an RTI to know its contents.

However, after taking charge, the Modi government had declassified around 200 files in connection with Netaji and his mysterious disappearance. TMC, back then as well, had asked the Centre to bring out all the files and not just few.

Meanwhile, the Centre on Tuesday renamed the Howrah-Kalka Mail as Netaji Express. It also declared that his birth anniversary on January 23 would be celebrated every year as ‘Parikram Diwas’.

The central government earlier this month had formed a high-level committee to commemorate Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose on his 125th birth anniversary.

The 85-member committee, which will be led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and also include Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, was formed to overlook the year-long celebration for Bose, from January 23, 2021 to the same day in 2022.

On the other hand, the West Bengal government has formed a separate committee to plan Netaji’s 125th birth anniversary celebrations.

The committee – led by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee – boasts a similar demography as its central counterpart. However, there are not many eminent personalities from outside Bengal.

As West Bengal heads towards a much-talked-about Assembly Election, the political parties are busy appeasing the cultural and social icons of the state.

Netaji, being one of the most prominent figures of Bengal since pre-independence, has been a major talking point ahead of the election with both BJP and TMC trying to emerge as the better servant of his cause.




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