Subhas Chandra Bose.

Subhas Chandra Bose.

News: PM Modi unveiled the statue of Subhas Chandra Bose at India Gate, along with inauguration of Kartavya Path( a renewed version of Rajpath).

Early Life of Subhas Chandra Bose:

  • Subhas Chandra Bose was born as the ninth child of Janakinath (a well-known lawyer) and Prabhavati Bose in 1897 in Cuttack. 
  • His family was upper-class Bengali family and his mother Prabhavati, was a devout Bengali Hindu well versed in Bengali Hindu customs and pujas.
  • During his childhood he had to attend all the pujas performed by his mother.
  • His father Janakinath sent all of their sons to an English-medium so that they could become perfect in English and assimilate into English society.
  • After Schooling, Bose went to Presidency College in Calcutta in 1913 to study philosophy where he was expelled for beating Professor of History E F Oaten for his remarks on England’s civilizing mission in India. Thereafter, Bose  resumed his studies at the Scottish Church College in Calcutta.
  • He joined the Cambridge University to prepare for the Indian Civil Services (ICS) exam in 1920
  • In his determination to join India’s freedom struggle he resigned from Indian Civil Services (ICS) to join the Mahatma Gandhi-led national movement. . 

Early Influence on Subhas Chandra Bose:

  • Teachings of Ramakrishna and his disciple Swami Vivekananda; Themes of  novel Ananda Math written by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee.

Ideological stance of Bose:

  • During the National Movement: Uncompromising anti-imperialism.
  • After Independence of India: Undiluted socialism.

Ideological divide between Subhas Chandra Bose and Mahatma Gandhi:

  • In 1921,at Mumbai then Bombay he met Gandhi but left the meeting after unsatisfactory discussion with Gandhi.
  • Despite tensions between Bose and Gandhi, Bose respected Gandhi a lot and was well aware of Gandhi’s significance. 
  • In his address from the Azad Hind Radio from Singapore in July 1944, Bose was the first to call Gandhi the “father of the nation”.

Comparison between Mahatma Gandhi and Subhas Chandra Bose:


Mahatma Gandhi Subhas Chandra Bose
1.Gandhi was willing to wait a long time for Independence. 1.Bose’s focus was on immediate action, if not immediate results.
2.Gandhi was hostile towards  modern technology and anti-materialistic. 2.In Bose’s world view technology and mass production are essential for survival and dignity.
3.Gandhi opposed the modern state and his focus was on  decentralized society. 3.According to Bose, a modern state and strong central government was necessary for strong India.
4. Means to achieve independence: Non-Violence. 4.Bose was not averse to violent means to achieve independence.


Bose’s role in Congress party:

  • Bose’s devotion towards the national movement made him one of the  most powerful political leaders in the Congress party.
  • During the Haripura Congress session in 1938, he was elected as Congress president. During his presidency, he opposed the idea of an Indian federation under British rule and  pushed for swaraj as a “National Demand”.
  • He defeated Dr Pattabhi Sitaramayya (Gandhi-backed candidate) in his re-election bid in 1939. Gandhi took this defeat  as a “personal defeat” and 12 of the 15 members of the Working Committee resigned from their roles including Jawaharlal Nehru, Vallabhbhai Patel and Rajendra Prasad.
  • Bose tried to setup another working committee but after being unable to set up another working committee, he  was forced to resign and replaced by Rajendra Prasad.
  • He created the “Forward Bloc” within the Congress Party, to bring the radical-left elements of the Congress party together and to provide Indian people with an alternative political leadership. 
  • He was arrested in 1940 before launching a campaign against a monument dedicated to Black Hole victims of Calcutta(In Black Hole tragedy, a number of imprisoned European soldiers died in 1756).
  • He escaped from prison and reached Nazi Germany through Soviet-controlled Kabul via the northwest of India.
  • During his stay in Germany, he started the Azad Hind Radio and was provided with a few thousand Indian prisoners of war captured by Germany.
  • Soon Bose’s focus turned towards South East Asia, specifically Singapore that had been taken over by Japan from the British. He left  Germany with his aide Abid Hasan at the peak of World War II and reached Tokyo after traveling down the Atlantic Ocean, crossing the Cape of Good Hope in Africa and entering the Indian Ocean past Madagascar.

Formation of Indian National Army (INA) and World War II

  • In 1942,Indian National Army(INA) was formed, supported by Japanese troops and consisting  of Indian prisoners of war(PoW) captured by the Japanese.
  • In INA women were also recruited for the Rani of Jhansi regiment.
  • In October 1943 at Singapore, the provisional government of the Azad Hind was formed. Thereafter, In January 1944, headquarters of the provisional government was moved to Rangoon.
  • INA, after fighting at the Arakan Front,crossed the Indo-Burma border and marched towards Imphal and Kohima in March, 1944.
  • However, this  “Chalo Dilli” campaign ended at Imphal due to the defeat of Japanese forces by the British and British Indian armies, with the help of American air support.
  • In April-May 1945, INA soldiers faced incessant enemy fire and  soldiers along with Bose were forced to retreat on foot to Thailand.
  • In August 1945,after  atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki by USA  war comes to an end leading to surrender of Japanese forces on August 16.
  • After that Bose left South East Asia on a Japanese plane and headed toward China where his plane got crashed. 

Source: Indian Express.

Article: 5 things about life and times of Subhas Chandra Bose


Yojna daily current affairs eng med 15 Sep

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