KOLKATA (TIP): The Nehru regime snoop reports that have rocked the country are only a trickle from the reams of classified documents on Netaji still locked away in a ‘secret cell’ in Kolkata.
Sixty-four files pertaining to Subhash Chandra Bose — including intelligence reports on surveillance over his relatives between 1947 and 1968 — are still being kept secret by the Bengal government, says Netaji’s grandnephew Abhijit Ray. “The two files whose contents created a sensation last week are locked up in a safe at the Special Branch office on Lord Sinha Road. There are at least 62 other files in the same office, referred to as ‘home cell department’ of West Bengal, that are yet to be disclosed,” Ray said.
Netaji researcher Anuj Dhar, who calls the secrecy over Netaji files the “biggest cover-up in the history of modern India”, confirmed the existence of these 64 files. “The reference to these files is made in the status report of the Mukherjee Commission,” said Dhar, adding that the contents that went public last week were photocopies of two such files.
As demand for declassification of files gains momentum, Kolkata-based NGO India’s Smile — that had filed a PIL in Calcutta high court on January 6, 2014, seeking declassification of secret documents on Netaji and INA — filed supplementary affidavit on Thursday, stating that the Bengal government had 64 secret files in its possession but was denying its existence.
In reply to an RTI, the state government had on February 25, 2014, said that it did not have any secret files on Netaji and that all files it had had been declassified. However, only a month later, on March 24, 2014, a letter (ref no. 921-PL/PF/14M-H/14) written by the home department, police establishment branch, at Nabanna, states that files on Netaji may be available in a hidden location. “I am directed to say that no information regarding this matter is available at this end and to say that the required information may be available from secret cell of this department,” an assistant secretary of the home department wrote.
“This obviously means Netaji files are kept at the Special Branch office in Lord Sinha Road. Yet, the state government has been mum on the matter for years,” said Rajeev Sarkar, chief functionary officer of the NGO.
Netaji’s grandnephew, Chandra Bose, is livid over the state government’s silence. “I find it incomprehensible that while Modi could pry out 40 minutes from his busy schedule — that included a meeting with German chancellor Angela Merkel — to meet Surya Bose and listen to the demand for declassification, chief minister Mamata Banerjee could not even spare time to make a statement on the burning issue,” he said.
Netaji’s niece Chitra Ghosh said she was extremely disappointed that the state government was still holding on to the classified files.