The 119th birth anniversary of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose on 23rd January, 2016 will turn a new chapter in the history of India. That is because; on this day the first phase of declassification of the Government files belonging to the freedom fighter begin.
The declaration was a huge step on the part of the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi who had met with the freedom fighter’s family members and had stood beside in compliance to their long-standing demand.
While we wait for just a few more hours to learn more about a history that had so long been a mystery for everyone, there still lurks a feeling of pessimism that we cannot suppress. For it is one thing to have high expectations and another to become over-confident.
So, what can one expect to find from this day on 23rd January? Will it reveal secrets that are different from the already established versions? That we are yet to find out. Its just a matter of few more hours before the sun will rise up and all the files will be turned open. However, before any of that happens –
The Curious Case of the 33 Files
Out of the 41 classified and 17 unclassified files, only 33 files are likely to be released today on account of the degree of sensitivity that the rest of the subject matter holds. These are the 33 files that are likely to be sent for the archives. Out of these 33 files, 14 are related to the working and formation of the three queries – Shah Nawaz Committee of 1956, the Khosla Committee of 1970 -74 and the JMCI of 1999 – 2006.
There are two files that relate to the communication happening between Samaar Guhaand of the Government of India. Each of these files contains a record of the communication held between the Government and the Forward Bloc Leaders in 2006, the conferment of Bharat Ratna, the construction of the INA memorial, the acquisition of the Janakya Nath Bhavan by the Government of Odisha, transfer of the ashes from Japan to India, INA related properties in the far East and papers concerning the funeral of Netaji’s widow.
Only 10 out of the total number of files talk about the freedom fighter and his disappearance. While three of them are dated back to the 1970s, 1080s and the 1990s. The latest one was generated in the year 2006.
Nothing much is revealed beyond this about the files. Nevertheless, many believe the process of undertaking this initiative will turn out to be a good start in the supposed history of the nation’s biggest cover-up.