Honourable Chief Minister
2 February, 2010
Subject: Request for appointing an experts' panel to investigate the case of Bhagwanji/Gumnami whom a retired judge of the Supreme Court has identified as Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose
As you are aware, the mysterious disappearance of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose remains controversial more than 60 years after India's independence, although three inquiries have been instituted during this period. While the first two inquiries opined that Netaji had died in a plane crash in Taiwan in 1945, the most recent inquiry headed by a retired judge of the Supreme Court - Justice MK Mukherjee -- after six years of investigation (1999-2005) found that a fake news of Netaji's death in Taiwan was given out to allow his escape from the approaching Allied forces. The commission also concluded that so-called Netaji's ashes kept in Renkoji Temple in Tokyo are actually of a Japanese solider.
The Congress-led government at the Centre, however, rejected this report on the basis of superficial and imagined reasons. Such a response was not unexpected, as the indifferent attitude of the Congress party towards Netaji is well known to the people of this country.
One of the compelling possibilities of Netaji's existence after 1945 that came up during the investigation by the Justice Mukherjee Commission of Inquiry (JMCI) was that of an unnamed monk who lived in various places in Uttar Pradesh from 1955 till 1985. Known as Bhagwanji or Gumnami Baba, he was last known to have lived in Faizabad. In fact, the story of Bhagwanji has been well known to the political and administrative circles and the media in the state. Justice Mukherjee seriously investigated this possibility but could not reach a conclusion due lack of any "clinching evidence", as he has stated in his report.
In an upcoming documentary, Justice Mukherjee has been shown to make "strictly off the record" assertion that he "100 per cent" sure that Bhagwanji of Faizabad was Subhas Chandra Bose in disguise. In saying so, Justice Mukherjee -- who did not know that his statements were being recorded -- has unwillingly made public what has the potential to change the history of modern India.
The following Mail Today story sums up the statement of Justice Mukherjee.
If indeed Bhagwanji was Netaji, independent India's longest running mystery can be resolved. There have also been claims that Bhagwanji was an impostor, set up to confuse people. The people must know the truth -- whatever it is. It can only be found out after thoroughly investigating the matter. There are well over 2,000 documents and personal belongings of Bhagwanji in the custody of the District Magistrate of Faizabad. They could provide valuable leads and a number of Bhagwanji's living followers in Uttar Pradesh and in Kolkata can provide the supporting details. In fact, upon examining some of these items and Bhagwanji's followers, Justice Mukherjee had observed in his report that "there is no reason for not acting or relying upon the evidence of the ... witnesses."
An independent analysis of handwriting by Mr B Lal -- one of India's best known experts in the field-concluded that Bhagwanji's handwriting in English and Bangla matched with that of Netaji. However, reports of two experts from central government institutions, as well as a DNA analysis done on a set of teeth found at his residence (again, conducted by central government laboratory) yielded negative results. As a consequence, Justice Mukherjee was compelled to leave the matter inconclusive in his report - even though doubts were expressed by commission officials in private over the authenticity of government reports.
Now, Justice Mukherjee's revelation points to the fact that he himself could not accept the veracity of those reports. On the contrary, not being in a position to challenge the findings of the forensic evidence, he was constrained to accept them and thus leave this issue inconclusive.
Therefore, in view of this revelation, we are appealing to you take the lead and help remove the veil from one of India's greatest mysteries. Traditionally the Congress party has shown great indifference to one of India's greatest sons -- Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose -- and the UPA government, without much credible reason rejected Justice Mukherjee's report because the findings were inconvenient to it and would have called the bluff off series of actions that have been undertaken to perpetuate the myth of Netaji's death. It is also to be noted that the central government has deliberately avoided taking note of this revelation by the chairperson of a commission appointed by the Central government following a court order.
This issue is close to the heart of millions of Indians across the world and the youth today is restless to get to the bottom of the truth. However, neither we, nor anyone else trusts that the Congress-led central government will take any serious step to solve this mystery. On the contrary, we are apprehensive that the items now preserved at the District Treasury of Faizabad could come under threat now that Justice Mukherjee has spilled the beans.
We believe that we are representing millions of Indians in appealing to you take concrete steps to take the lid off this mystery. We appeal to you to appoint a multi-disciplinary panel of experts, not linked to Congress party in any way and consisting of historians, archivists, forensic experts, legal experts and representatives of civil society organisations to delve into the mystery. We the members of Mission Netaji have been consistently investigating this issue for the past four years, and we would be more than happy to provide any assistance in this investigation.
We eagerly look forward to your kind response. We are also sending supporting documents by post, which you might like to look into as reference.