Parakram Divas – Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose

Recently, the Union Ministry of Culture, announced that January 23rd, would be celebrated as Parakram Divas. on the occassion of the birth anniversary of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.

Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, was born on January 23, 1897. On the occassion of his 125th Birth Anniversary, the Government of India has announced to celebrate January 23rd as Parakram Divas every year. Honoring his contribution to the Freedom Struggle, the Indian Railways has also renamed the Howrah Kalka Express as Netaji Express. So let us learn a few facts about the man, who played a major role in India’s freedom struggle.

It is blood alone,

that can pay the price of freedom.

Tum mujhe Khoon Do,

main tumhe Azaadi Doonga

Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose

Subhas Chandra Bose was born in Cuttack, Orissa Division, Bengal Province, to Prabhavati Dutt Bose and Janakinath Bose, an advocate. He was the ninth in a family of 14 children. He was one of the main Founders of Azad Hind Fauj or Indian National Army.

After securing the second position in the matriculation examination in 1913, he was admitted to the Presidency College.He was influenced by the teachings of Swami Vivekananda and Ramakrishna after reading their works at the age of 16. He later joined the Scottish Church College at the University of Calcutta and passed his B.A. in 1918 in philosophy.

Bose was eager to gain admission to a college at the University of Cambridge. However, it was already past the deadline for admission. With the help of some Indian students there and Mr. Reddaway, the Censor of Fitzwilliam Hall, a body run by the Non-Collegiate Students Board of the university, for making available the university’s education at an economical cost without formal admission to a college, Bose entered the register of the university on 19 November 1919. He chose the Mental and Moral Sciences Tripos and simultaneously set about preparing for the Civil Service exams.

Freedom is not given,

it is taken

Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose

He came fourth in the ICS examination and was selected, but he did not want to work the British. He resigned from his civil service job on 23 April 1921 and returned to India.

During his early years, Bose had been a leader of the younger, radical, wing of the Indian National Congress in the late 1920s and 1930s, rising to become Congress President in 1938 and 1939. He was expelled from Congress leadership positions in 1939, following differences with Gandhiji and the Congress high command, after openly attacking the Congress’ foreign and internal policies. During the period of 1921-1941, he was imprisoned eleven times in various jails during the freedom struggle.

Bose advocated complete unconditional independence for India, whereas the All-India Congress Committee wanted it in phases, through Dominion status. Finally at the historic Lahore Congress convention, the Congress adopted Purna Swaraj (complete independence) as its motto. Gandhi was given rousing receptions wherever he went after Gandhi-Irwin pact. Subhas Chandra Bose, travelling with Gandhi in these endeavours, later wrote that the great enthusiasm he saw among the people enthused him tremendously and that he doubted if any other leader anywhere in the world received such a reception as Gandhi did during these travels across the country. He was imprisoned and expelled from India. Defying the ban, he came back to India and was imprisoned again.

Bose was elected president of the Indian National Congress for two consecutive terms, but had to resign from the post following ideological conflicts with Mahatma Gandhi and after openly attacking the Congress’ foreign and internal policies. Bose believed that Gandhi’s tactics of non-violence would never be sufficient to secure India’s independence, and advocated violent resistance. He established a separate political party, the All India Forward Bloc and continued to call for the full and immediate independence of India from British rule. He was imprisoned by the British authorities eleven times.

His stance did not change with the outbreak of the Second World War, which he saw as an opportunity to take advantage of British weakness. At the outset of the war, he left India, travelling to the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan, seeking an alliance with each of them to attack the British government in India. With Imperial Japanese assistance, he re-organised and later led the Azad Hind Fauj or Indian National Army (INA), formed with Indian prisoners-of-war and plantation workers from British Malaya, Singapore, and other parts of Southeast Asia, against British forces.

His political views and the alliances he made with Nazi and other militarist regimes at war with Britain have been the cause of arguments among historians and politicians, with some accusing him of fascist sympathies, while others in India have been more sympathetic towards the realpolitik that guided his social and political choices.

Subhas Chandra Bose believed that the Bhagavad Gita was a great source of inspiration for the struggle against the British. He was the person, who used the Slogan Jai Hind for the first time.

Master of disguise

Netaji was also known as a Master of Disguise, because, he would often escape the clutches of the British due to his Disguise.

Once he was put on House Arrest by the British Government. He ensured to stay within the four walls of the house for the next few days and did not come in front of any guards. Finally on January 18,1941, he escaped the house dressed as a Pathan along with his brother Sisir Bose.


He passed away mysteriously on August 18,1945 in an Air Plane Crash. The mystery of what happened to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose and how did he die continues to persist, even 75 years after he supposedly perished in an air crash in Taipei. There are various conspiracy theories that come up every now and then with respect to his death.


Netaji was married to Emilie Schenkl and they had a daughter together Anita Bose Pfaff.

Declassification of Files

The Declassification of Files was announced by Hon’ble Prime Minister of India on 14 October 2015 when he met a delegation of members of Netaji family at his residence in New Delhi. The first lot of 33 files which were declassified were handed over by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) to National Archives of India on 4 December 2015. Subsequently, declassified files relating to Netaji were transferred from the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) 37 files, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and 25 files from the PMO. As a first step, digital copies of 100 files relating to Netaji were released in public domain, by Shri Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister of India on 23rd January 2016 to meet the long-standing public demand to access these files. These files also began to facilitate scholars to carry out further research on Netaji. The National Archives of India subsequently released digital copies of 75 declassified files relating to Netaji in the public domain in two batches on 29 March 2016 and 27 April 2016. The 4th batch of 25 files consists of 5 files of the PMO, 4 files of MHA and 16 files of MEA pertaining to the years 1968-2008 was launched on 27 May, 2016.


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You may also like to read:

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Seperation of Powers – 2

Morality in Rule of Law

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