Pandit Nehru, Clement Atlee and Subhash Chandra Bose

In the earlier part of 2015 it came to light the government of India had spied on family of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose. This has been confirmed recently with declassification of files on Netaji by West Bengal government. Such revelation raises a lot of question about why and how government of India of the time had treated a prominent freedom fighter who had sacrificed everything in his life for freedom of the nation.

I came across a letter Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru wrote to Mr. Clement Atlee, Prime Minister of Great Britain. I do not know veracity of the letter. Because it does not have a signature at the bottom. Also, some of the text material appear incongruous with subject matter. But it is claimed that Pandit Nehru asked Shri Shyam Lal Jain to type it. This matter was reported to Khosla commission in 1970. I have included an image of the letter and included the relevant text verbatim from the website “Mukherjee Commission and Mystery of Netaji’s …“:

When the Khosla commission was appointed in 1970, Shyamlal Jain from Meerut gave his statements to the commission. He was asked by Nehru to come to Asif Ali’s residence with the typewriter on 26/ 27 December 1945. He was given a letter to type; with a vague signature at its bottom. It had the following content:

“Netaji reached Dairen in Manjuria at 1:30 pm on 23rd August 1945, from Saigon by plane. The plane was a Japanese bomber. He had plenty of gold with him in bars and ornaments. After disembarking, he ate banana and drank tea. He and 4 others, one of them a Japanese officer Shidei; got into a jeep and went towards the Russian border. After about 3 hours, the jeep came back and gave the pilot instruction to fly back to Tokyo.”

Nehru asked Jain to type a letter to the then British prime minister Clements Attlee. The letter had the following   content

Nehru asked Jain to type a letter to the then British prime minister Clements Attlee. The letter had the following   content

“Mr Clements Attlee

British Prime Minister

10 Downing Street, London

Dear Mr Attlee,

I understand from most reliable source that Subhash Chandra Bose, your war criminal, has been allowed to enter Russian territory by Stalin. This is a clear treachery and betrayal of faith by the russians as Russia has been an ally of the British- Americans, which she should not have done.

Please take care of it and do what you consider proper and fit.

Yours sincerely,

Jawaharlal Nehru”

Coupled with information about spying on Bose family, this letter demonstrates the kind of view  the government of India held on Bose and his family. If the allegation of Pandit Nehru writing a letter to the then British Prime Minister is correct, I find this to be horrible. 

It is understandable that allied forces would have  liked to put Netaji on trial for seeking help of Axis powers – Germany, Japan and Italy. India must be under extreme pressure to hand over Netaji to victorious allied powers. 

No country hands over their revered figures no matter how great is the pressure. It is unfortunate that would be prime minister of free India will give information about  his fellow traveller of freedom movement to erstwhile colonial masters. 

It is one thing to belittle and disown Netaji’s contribution to freedom movement of India, the other is to spy and pass on information about him to British. From this revelation, correct or incorrect, a few questions emerge:

  • Was Pandit Nehru’s defence of soldiers of INA in Red Fort all drama? 
  • Did government of India give assurance and/or undertaking to foreign powers on handing over Netaji if found?
  • Did successive governments systematically interfere with commissions that set out to unveil  truth about Netaji’s final moment?
  • Was Government of India aware of the existence of Netaji in India in different disguise?

I think Pakistan has defended Dawood Ibrahim and Hafeez Saeed better despite pressure from the world powers. By contrast, Indian leaders have not only chosen to ignore but in worse case scenario were also ready to handover an architect of freedom movement of India. I pray to god the letter is not true.

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