How Netaji’s speech was broadcast in parliament

August 28th, 2008 - 4:24 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 28 (IANS) It was the summer of 1997. Krishna Bose, a Trinamool Congress MP and relative of Subhas Chandra Bose, was having a tough time convincing fellow MPs that Netaji’s famous speech should be broadcast along with those of Mahtama Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru at the golden jubilee celebrations of India’s independence in parliament. But she was not sure how to go about it, Bose recalled at the launch of her book “An Outsider in Politics” (published by Penguin India) at the Hotel Taj Palace Wednesday night.

She hurriedly scribbled a note on a piece of a torn paper asking then prime minister Inder Kumar Gujral for his ‘nod’ before making an impassioned speech in parliament arguing that Netaji’s famous ‘freedom’ speech deserved to be broadcast on this momentous event.

Gujral nodded. And eventually Netaji’s resonant call for azadi was broadcast on the midnight of Aug 15, 1997, Bose, the widow of Netaji’s nephew Sishir Bose, recalled proudly.

Gujral, who was the chief guest at the book release function, smiled and lavished praise on Bose for her fine knowledge of parliamentary niceties and her dedication to myriad social causes.

In a lighter vein, he also contested the title of the book, saying Bose was “not an outsider but an insider in politics” and anyone who has seen her in parliament will vouch for that.

More heart-felt compliments flowed. Filmmaker Shyam Benegal, who has made an acclaimed film on the great freedom fighter, recalled how she and her family went out of the way to help him access archival material relating to Netaji’s life.

Bose, a veteran politician, three-time MP and educationist, read out excerpts from her book which is an autobiography and a chronicle of eventful times she lived through, dating back to her scared memories of insane violence during the Partition to more contemporary events like the demolition of the Babri Masjid in 1992.

The book conjures up a vivid picture of her multi-faceted life as an academic and a working mother and gives an involved but detached view of the theatrics of election campaigns, the complexities of parliamentary politics and the forces shaping India’s foreign policy at the turn of the new millennium

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