Kolkata is a city which boasts of a rich cultural heritage and history. Before Kolkata, this city used to known as “Calcutta” and was the Indian capital during the British Period. The city has raised famous personalities like Rabindra Nath Tagore, Mother Teresa, Satyajit Ray, Ishwar Chand Vidya Sagar and Raja Ram Mohan Roy. However, there is one particular personality which played a huge part in the independence of India. He shook the British government, went to jail every month because of his revolutionary actions and formed the Indian Army. I believe you must have guessed it by now. I am talking about Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose. In this article, I would be talking about my experience when I visited his residence – Netaji Bhavan situated in Elgin Road area of Kolkata.
Netaji Bhavan – The House Of The Founder Of Indian Army
Background About Subhash Chandra Bose
Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose was one of the biggest freedom fighters of India. He was the president of the Indian national congress (INC) at a point of time but since he didn’t believe in the ideology of “No Violence” he later resigned from his post. After the ideological spat between him and the INC, Netaji understood that in order to fight the British he would need an army. He decided to go to Germany to meet Adolf Hitler and ask for his help to fight for the British. After the meeting a few years later, he went to Japan where a helicopter crash caused his death.
The death of Netaji has remained a mystery to date. There are certain investigations which were carried out by the government but these files have been made classified. If you google about his death you would be coming across many theories. Some say that he was captured by another army, some say that his death was “faked” to protect him from the British. A few files were declassified around 4-5 years back and according to the reports, Netaji didn’t die due to the crash. It’s been more than 70 years of Independence but the death of Netaji still remains a mystery and is one of the biggest secrets which the government has decided not to disclose to the public.
Netaji Bhavan is located at Elgin Road, Kolkata just opposite Forum mall. It is a shame that many people are not even aware that it exists there. The building serves as a museum and memorial for Netaji. This year it would be Netaji’s 122nd birthday. When you enter the Netaji Bhavan the first thing that you would come across is a car. The model of the car is German Wanderer it is the same car which helped him escape to Berlin in 1941 to meet Hitler. In the ground floor, you would find a library. The biggest reason why his residence was converted into a museum is due to his sudden and mysterious disappearance which to-date remains unsolved.
When you enter the first floor you would come across his bedroom and all his belongings. When I saw it, I was really surprised because it has been really well arranged and maintained; something which the museums in India generally lack. I can’t tell you how it feels to realize that you are standing in the same room where Netaji once stood. You would see his office and the walls are painted with our tri-colour.
As you go up the floors you would come around photographs, clothing, artefacts which would help you to understand the work and life of Netaji.
If you are a resident of Kolkata and you still haven’t visited this Bhavan of this freedom fighter then I must tell you that you are missing out on something which is extraordinary. A person who dedicated his entire life for the service of his country deserves much more than that. We might never know what actually might have happened to him; we can’t even blame the government for it. There are certain secrets which are maintained by the government to maintain peace in the country. Even England revealed their “Enigma Secret” 50 years after the end of World War II. Hopefully, one day we would get to know what happened to him. Until then, let’s pay our respect to this individual by visiting his residence and remembering the forgotten hero. Jai Hind!