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Posted on Jan 27, 10:10PM | IANS
Legendary freedom fighter Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose's daughter Anita Pfaff Sunday hoped to bring her father's "ashes" kept in Japan back to India, saying it would be the "perfect homecoming for him".
"If it is possible, I would like to," replied Pfaff to queries if she would like to bring Netaji's "ashes" back to the country of his birth.
"It would be the perfect homecoming for him," she said on the sidelines of a book launch on Netaji here. The book "Netaji in Europe" written by Jan Kuhlmann was launched at the Oxford bookstore.
Pfaff also stated that she "firmly believes" that Netaji died in a plane crash in Taiwan and that the ashes kept in the Renkoji Temple in Japan are her father's.
A branch of Netaji's family as also many others outside believe that he died in a plane crash in Taiwan on Aug 18, 1945, and his ashes are preserved in the Renkoji temple in Tokyo. But there is also a strong second opinion across the nation which nixes the aircrash theory and does not consider the Renkoji ashes as those of Bose.
Also present at the event was D.N. Bose, Netaji's nephew, who doesn't believe in the "plane crash theory" and rubbished the claims that the ashes were of Netaji.
"People have the right to form their personal opinions and I have nothing to say about Anita's claims. But what I know and is true, is that the ashes are not of Netaji. He never died in the crash," said Bose quoting the Mukherjee Commission report to buttress his claims.
The Mukherjee Commission, the one-man board of retired Supreme Court judge Manoj Mukherjee was instituted in 1999 to inquire into the controversy surrounding the reported death of Netaji in 1945. It concluded that he did not die in the plane crash, as alleged, but probably flew towards the (erstwhile) USSR and the ashes in the Japanese temple are not of Netaji.