West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday to declare January 23, the birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, as a national holiday and take decisive steps “to find out what happened to Netaji and place the matter in public domain”.
Describing Netaji as one of the “Greatest sons of Bengal”, Banerjee in her letter to PM Modi said, “You are well aware that 125th birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose will be celebrated on January 23,2022. Netaji ,one of the Greatest sons of Bengal, is a National Hero, a national leader and an icon of India’s freedom movement against thr British Rule. He is an inspiration across all generations. Under his untiring leadership, thousands of valiant soldiers of the Indian National Army made supreme sacrifice of the motherland.”
“The birthday of Netaji is celebrated every year all over the country with great dignity and reverence. You may kindly recall that over a long time, we have been requesting the Central Government to declare Netaji’s birthday as a National Holiday. However, this has not materialised so far,” Banerjee said. “In order to truly pay respect to our great leader and a National Hero, we would reiterate our request that 23rd January be declared a National Holiday,” she added.
She said on the occasion of the ensuing initiation of the celebration of the 125th birth anniversary of Netaji, this would be a “very appropriate recognition to the National Leader”, who is an epitome of determination, courage, leadership, unity and love for motherland. Banerjee further requested the Central Government to take decisive steps to find out “what happened to Netaji and place the matter in public domain so that people get to know what finally happened to the great leader”.
The Chief Minister said, “Moreover, you are also aware about the mystery surrounding the disappearance of Netaji. People of the country and especially of Bengal have the right to know the truth about this matter. West Bengal government has already declassified and placed in public domain many files relating to Netaji on this issue in the past, on several occasions, we had requested the Central Government to take further appropriate steps to give conclusive picture to this matter.”
Banerjee said Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose has a “special place in our hearts”. “I would like to request for your kind personal intervention to see that the Central Government declares 23rd January, Netaji’s birthday, a National Holiday, and also takes appropriate steps to give conclusive position to the issue relating to the disappearance of Netaji and unravel the truth by giving the people of the country and abroad the much-awaited opportunity to know what happened to their great leader – their inspiration and their passion,” she concluded. Though the third degree burn from aircrash was sighted as the cause of his death in 1945, it was widely believed that Netaji did not die in that plane crash. (ANI)