Nearly a month after the Mamata Banerjee-led government in West Bengal declassified 64 files related to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said that the Centre will initiate the process of declassifying files on the freedom fighter on January 23, 2016, which is Bose's birth anniversary.
With this, the mystery surrounding Bose's death could finally come to an end.
The PM made the announcement while meeting 35 members of Bose's extended family at his 7, Race Course Road residence.
"The Prime Minister said that he finds the suggestions of the family members of Netaji to be similar to his own thinking and the view of the Union Government. He said he sees no reason to strangle history. He declared that the process of declassification of files will begin on January 23rd, 2016, the birthday of Netaji," a statement released by the PMO said.
The Prime Minister said that those nations who forget history also lose the power to create it. He even assured them that he would also ask foreign governments to declassify files on Netaji available with them.
It was a privilege to welcome family members of Subhas Babu to 7RCR. We had a remarkable & extensive interaction. pic.twitter.com/Zxa5K3ZBdoâ€” Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 14, 2015
I told Subhas Babu's family members- please consider me a part of your family. They shared their valuable suggestions with me.â€” Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 14, 2015
There is no need to strangle history. Nations that forget their history lack the power to create it. pic.twitter.com/Nfz94f3tsqâ€” Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 14, 2015
Process of declassification of files relating to Netaji will begin on 23rd January 2016, Subhas Babu's birth anniversary.â€” Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 14, 2015
Will also request foreign Governments to declassify files on Netaji available with them. Shall begin this with Russia in December.â€” Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 14, 2015
On September 18, Mamata Banerjee released 64 files on Netaji, also allowing the public to view them.
The West Bengal government's move is said to have put pressure on the Centre to declassify files on Netaji, an issue which the latter has been dodging for several years now citing adverse effect on foreign relations.
The Centre is reportedly in possession of 41 files on Bose which were created between 1953 and 2000. Of them, only two have been declassified and can be accessed by the public at the National Archives of India, reported The Indian Express.
Of the rest, four are "Top Secret", 20 "Secret", five "Classified" and 10 "Unclassifed", adds the report.