Chalo Dhili

INA and Japanese soldiers cheering after the joint forces captured a strategic spot in the Indo-Burma border, 1944.

After several months of intensive military training, Subhas Chandra Bose felt that the INA was ready to free India. His plan was to enter north-east India through Burma. By January 1944, the Provisional Government of Azad Hind and the INA began moving to Burma. Together with the Japanese, the INA successfully staged two military campaigns in March and captured Imphal and Arakan.

Thereafter, the Japanese decided to capture Kohima, a strategic point in the mountainous border region between India and Burma. However, the INA and Japanese took longer than expected to capture it. When the monsoons arrived in May, the INA and Japanese who had run out of supplies by then, were forced to retreat. The tide of war had turned.

On 15 August 1945, Japan surrendered. Despite the loss of an ally, Bose did not waver. He immediately looked to the Soviet Union for support.

Portrait of Subhas Chandra Bose, c. 1940s.

With the loss of the Japanese ally, Bose immediately looked to the Soviet Union for support. However, on 18 August 1945, while en route to the Soviet Union via Taiwan, his plane crashed. It was later alleged by various sources that the plane did not crash and Bose safely reached the Soviet Union.

"Subhas Chandra Bose was a man you could not forget once you knew him; his greatness was manifest. Like many other revolutionists, the essence of his greatness was that he lived for a single task and dream and so set his own seal on them".

Source: Ba Maw, Breakthrough in Burma. Memoirs of a Revolution, 1939-1946, (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1968): 348.

Hailed as “Netaji” – or Great Leader – he was everything a leader should be. Till today, his great leadership skills and charisma are still remembered by many.



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