The famous freedom fighter of India, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose died in a plane crash in Taiwan. At that time, Taiwan was occupied by the Japanese. He died on 18th August 1945. So today is his 75th death anniversary.
Netaji’s doings a few days before death
Before 15th August 1945, Bose was there in Singapore. The second World War had just ended and Japan had surrendered. Bose left Singapore but not before sending a secret telegram to Debnath Das on the morning of 16th August. It said that Mr. Das must keep the treasures of the INA safe and keep it a secret.
Netaji- two days before the plane crash
On the midnight of 16th to 17th August, Bose called upon all the officials and discussed various plans with them. They were supposed to head to Dairen. At 6 am they all assembled at the Bangkok airport. Netaji told General Isoda that several officers must accompany him. It was so because he wanted to continue Indi’s struggle for independence and not just hide.
Where was Netaji a day before his death?
A day before his death, the Japanese in Saigon could not provide two planes. Instead, they carved out one place for Netaji in a plane about to fly to Tokyo with 11 onboard. Netaji insisted on traveling with the entire team but at last, had to choose one person for company. He chose Habibur and the Japanese agreed to it.
Netaji waited for the treasures to arrive before boarding the plane. The plane was a two-engine bomber that could carry a one-tonne load. The pilot of the plane did not want to load the boxes into the plane. Netaji wanted another person with him for safekeeping. He had to choose either a man or the boxes. He chose the latter. The bomber took off from Saigon at 5:20 pm on August 17.
The day Netaji supposedly died
The passengers halted the plane at Tourane. It again took off at sunrise on 18th August. It reached Taihoku at noon and the pilots filled it with the fuel needed to fly it. Dairen was the destination of the plane and it left the grounds at 2-2:30 pm. As soon as the plane rose into the air, everyone heard an explosion at about an altitude of 20-30 meters. Three-four loud bangs followed it. The plane nosedived. The propeller on the left-wing of the plane fell off. Then it crashed beyond the concrete runway and broke in two.
How the crash affected Netaji and others
Seven people in total survived the crash with a lot of injuries. The crash covered Netaji in petrol and had to come out of the debris through the fire. Habibur followed him out. Netaji’s entire body caught fire and Habibur open his sweater and clothes with great difficulty. One of the officers made Netaji roll on the ground to put out the fire. His body and face were scorched with heat and hairs singed.
What happened to Netaji after the crash
After the crash, the local people took Netaji and the others injured to a small military hospital nearby. It was more like a first-aid treatment. Netaji was in the most serious condition. His skin had taken a greyish color, he was burnt all over. His heart had burned too. His eyes and face were swollen. Although he developed a high fever, he was in his senses. At 7-7:30, his condition deteriorated and he breathed his last at 8 pm.
The IIL investigation on Netaji’s death
The IIL carried out an investigation in the late 1940s and early 1950s. They brought out a report which said that although Netaji died on 18th August, the plane accident was an act of sabotage. They said that the Japanese were responsible for the plane crash.
The mystery of Netaji’s death
There is no information in the public domain regarding the investigation on the reasons for the plane crash. It is highly possible that the three files of Netaji held as ‘classified’ in Japan holds the keys. Till today, many believe that his death was a pretense and he carried out this act to escape from the clutches of the British. Some of the people even claim to have seen Netaji after his supposed death. No one knows the truth and maybe the bloodline of the famous and loved freedom fighter still lives on.