National Hero of India

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National Hero of India :

The history of the struggle for freedom contains hundreds and hundreds of freedom fighters. The pictures of the following namely Tilak, Ghokhalc, Gandhi, Patel, Shastri, Bhagat Singh, Azad, Bose and Nehru appear before our eyes. They are all like Druva Stars. Hundreds of our freedom fighters sacrificed their lives and had become immortal.

Among them Subhas Chandra Bose was one who won the hearts of all Indians and they considered him the greatest hero. He was a national hero for two reasons. First he belonged to the modem period of history, Secondly his life is worthy of emulation than that of any other national hero.

Subhas Chandra Bose was born in 1897. His father's name was Janakidas Bose who was a wealthy lawyer in Cuttack. His mother's name was Prabhavathi. His father was like a disciplined soldier and his mother was a pious woman. At the age of five, he was admitted to a European school. He felt very uncomfortable in his European dress and with European pupils. So he left that school and joined the Raven Shaw Collegiate School. He got a distinction in the Matriculation Examination. Then he joined the Presidency College. Bose was an intelligent student. He was also a born patriot and a leader. Once he organized a strike by students. They boycotted classes of Mr. Osten, a professor of English. He had insulted an Indian student. Ultimately Mr. Osten had to tender apology for his misconduct. The teaching was not good at the college. So he used to take part in other activities like debate, social service and visiting holy places. After passing his B.A. degree examination in first class, he went to England to study for the Indian Civil Service Examination. He began to work as an ICS officer in India after returning from England.

It was at this time that he came under the influence of Gandhi. He wanted to follow Gandhiji’s leadership. But he was a Government servant, an ICS officer. He was in a dilemma. He had to decide whether he should serve the British or whether he should fight against them. It was really a difficult situation. He decided to join Gandhiji and fight for India’s Independence. He resigned from ICS.

He went about making speeches and encouraging the people of India to tight for their freedom. He was put in jail several times and his health was broken by continuous suffering. Other leaders also were suffering in the same way for the sake of the country. In due course, he began his own way of fighting. He did not want any compromise with the British. FIGHT was the word for him. He was twice elected President of the Indian National Congress. (1938 and 39)

In 1939 the Second World War broke out. Bose was arrested and he spent about six months in prison. He protested against his imprisonment. He also threatened to fast unto death if he was not released. The British released him hut kept him under close watch. This was the period of great mental suffering for Bose.

In 1941 Bose escaped from the police and disappeared. For months there was no news of him. He had left Calcutta in the disguise of a Muslim priest and had reached Kabul. From there he had gone to Moscow and then to Berlin. In 1944 he came to Singapore. Here he raised funds. Indians in Singapore gave money generously and Bose was able to form an army called the Indian National Army, the INA (Azad Hind Foug).

He himself became the supreme commander of it. He told his soldiers - Give your blood and I shall get you freedom. He then gave them slogan DELHI CHALO - March on to Delhi. On 22nd October 1943 he formed the provisional AZAD HIND SARKAR and became its Rastrapathi. His soldiers were so inspired and charmed by him that they called him Netaji - the leader. The INA was a model army in some ways. All the officers and men were filled with a desire to fight. Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs and Christians put aside all religious distinctions. They ate food which was cooked in common kitchens. A great lady officer of INA - The Captain Lakshmi was a great supporter of Bose and she was his right shoulder. Bose led his army.

The army marched more than a thousand miles, which was the distance between Singapore and the Burma Front. He hoped to lead the INA to Delhi and to drive the British out of India. The story of the INA March not only gives thrilling experience but also fill our heart with great pain and grief. It was because the INA soldiers were starving the uniforms were turn out and the sole of the boots had big holes. So, their feet were bleeding. Still they were marching and marching. At last they came to Imphal and Kohima in East Assam. The Second World War took the reverse turn. On 5th August 1945 and on 9th August 1945 two atom bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. This affected Bose greatly. So he left the area on 18th August 1945. The aero plane had explosive weapons also. Bose wanted to go to Tokyo. But the aircraft did not touch the ground. Bose was a genius. As a patriot, nationalist and leader, he was second to none. He was a man of great courage. It is very rare to see such a person.

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