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Alleged role of Stalin in killing of Subhas Chandra Bose too impacted India-Russia relations?

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New Delhi, Oct 04: Besides external forces like Pakistan, China and the US playing direct or indirect role to drive Russia away from India but of late certain domestic developments too have been responsible for widening the chasm between India and Russia. Demand for declassification of documents related to Subhas Chandra Bose have definitely caused confusion and talks like Russian dictator Joseph Stalin got Bose killed made the chasm even bigger.

File photo of Subhas Chandra Bose

Bharatiya Janata Party Rajya Sabha MP Subhramaniyan Swamy has been seeking declassification of files to unravel mystery behind the death of Bose in Russia. Swamy had gone to the extent of saying that Russian dictator Joseph Stalin got Netaji killed in Yakutsk Prison in Siberia. He claimed that the then Prime Minister of India Jawahar Lal Nehru was aware about the fact of Bose being held captive in Yakutsk Prison.

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As per Swamy, Bose did not die in a plane crash in 1945 but was killed at the instance of Stalin. He wants declassification of secret files on the leader to unravel the mystery behind the death of freedom fighter.

Similarly as per another theory by General G D Bakshi, Netaji was possibly tortured to death in a Siberian gulag. This was done either by the British interrogators or under the orders of Stalin. Bose did not die in the plane crash and had instead escaped to the former Soviet Union.

Besides these two public figures, Prof Purabi Roy of Jadhavpur University has been of the view that the Russians knew about Bose's great escape from Kolkata to Kabul and subsequently to Germany via Russia. "Comrade Acchar Singh Chinna, Baldev Singh Talwar, Niranjan Talib, Ajoy Ghose were involved in the plan to get Bose safely out of India. This is also recorded in the Russian Intelligence's archives."

She said that one of her colleague Alexander Kolesnikov at Russian Institute of Oriental Studies could trace Bose up to 1956, when he was discussed in a separate section at a Communist Congress in 1956.

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But strategic experts say that Stalin is the past and it is not necessary that Russia of today stands by all actions taken by Stalin. But they may have to at some stage come out more clearly about what happened to Bose. These issues are being raised in various books being written. People would like to end uncertainty about Subhas Chandra Bose. "The question and reason for him being killed could be: Do we get independence because of the non violence means and Satyagrah. Or was it also because Indian Army which was backbone of British Colonial rule all over the world. It turned around its back under the Subhas Chandra Bose's leadership. Navy and Air Force started turning against the British Colonial interest. They did not have any kind of support left behind the Indian Defence forces. That was the major reason behind British leaving India," said sources.

Sources said that domestic debate is going on whether it was Bose or other revolutionary. Or it was British desire to hand over power to Indians in a peaceful manner because of non-violent protest. Ever since the matter of killing of Bose started coming relations between both the countries deteriorated. This has definitely impacted the emotional bonding of Russia and India.

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