Chandrachur Ghose & Anuj Dhar's new book attempts to unravel the mystery surrounding Netaji's death
Starmark and Vitasta publishers recently hosted the book launch of Chandrachur Ghose and Anuj Dhar’s latest work, Conundrum: Subhas Bose’s Life After Death at their South City Mall outlet. Actor Prosenjit Chatterjee and Bengali film director Srijit Mukherji, both unveiled the book, together with the authors and also took part in the discussion that followed. The book will soon be made into a Bengali film named Gumnaami by Srijit Mukherji, where actor Prosenjit Chatterjee will be playing the lead role.
Conundrum: Subhas Bose’s Life After Death is born out of extensive research by Anuj Dhar and Chandrachur Ghose, who have been pursuing the trail of Subhas Chandra Bose’s mysterious death in an air crash, and the existence of a Gumnaami Baba in Faizabad, UP, a couple of years after the incident.
Both Dhar and Ghose have been working for the past 15 years, to unearth all the official documents and government files which bears evidences that Gumnaami Baba and Subhas Chandra Bose, were in fact the same people. “Gumnaami Baba or Bhgwan Ji as he was known, lived in Faizabad, until 1985, and if he was indeed Subhas Chandra Bose, he would have been 88-year-old by that time, which is not an improbable situation, going by the life expectancy these days,” says Anuj Dhar, a former journalist and co-author of the book, who learnt about the existence of Gumnaami Baba in 2001 through personal sources and met Chandrachur Ghose, a business strategist consultant in the US, through an internet chat room.
The book, rather than giving a politically opinionated version of the mystery surrounding Netaji’s death, presents cold logic and leaves the reader to draw his/her own conclusion. There are well-researched evidences presented, from the Declassified documents from The Justice Manoj Kumar Mukherjee Commission of Enquiry (formed in 1999), which investigated all the probable theories of Subhas Chandra Bose’s death and debunked the myth that Subhas Chandra Bose died in an air crash, on the basis of significant circumstantial evidence.
There are other evidences too, including the letters written by Gumnaami Baba to his close associate from INA, Dr Pabitra Mohan Roy; to freedom-fighter Leela Roy and the journals of various other former revolutionaries like Kamalkanti Ghosh, Sunil Das and people from Anushilan Samiti, who visited Gumnaami Baba, or Netaji, in secrecy and made notes of what he told them during the discussion.
“We got the access to most of the papers in the year 2010, after a long battle with the Central Information Commission,. There are some Intelligence Papers too, which has comprehensive historical details about the INA, and can be used as substantial evidence pertaining to Gumnaami Baba and Netaji being the same person. But those files are yet to be declassified. Instead, Ministry of Defense has filed a case against me, a legal battle we have been fighting since 2011,” says Chandrachur Ghose, co-author.
Meanwhile the duo will be appealing to the Allahabad Court, to initiate a fresh enquiry into the case. The findings will not just validate the research carried out by Chandrachur and Anuj, but also change the way we perceive the history of the Indian freedom struggle.