What Netaji has in common with Hitler and Elvis

Fame can grant immortality, and in certain cases, deny a celebrity the very right to die.

 |  1-minute read |   27-01-2016
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Fame can grant immortality, and in certain cases, deny a celebrity the very right to die. Once someone has acquired his own mythology, he is no longer allowed to die the death of a simple commoner.

Nobody wants to consider that perhaps Elvis Presley could have died sitting on a commode suffering a heart attack like an ordinary mortal. Stories of Adolf Hitler's escape are recurring tabloid fodder.Our very own Subhash Chandra Bose had joined the hallowed pantheon of the undead quite some time back. In West Bengal, it was sacrilege to contemplate Bose's death till the sixties.

Also read: What's stopping Modi sarkar from doing a DNA test on Netaji's 'ashes'?

Many probes and committees were formed to investigate Bose's fate, and whenever the idea of “Netaji” dying in a plane crash was put forth, it was met with immense skepticism.It is not just mere closure that Indians are  looking for; what they actually want is a fittingly bombastic climax to the tale of the man who would have perhaps achieved great victories with his Azad Hind Fauj had fate not intervened.

Seemingly, dying the death of an unfortunate tourist does not do justice to his lore justice.Hence, the Gumnami Baba connections and the persistence of stories of the secret gulag prisoner. It would not matter if Bose himself appears in person from the heavens to announce, once and for all, his death in the plane crash; he would still face the disbelief of the teeming millions who, in the heart of their hearts, do not want an anticlimactic end to the legend of Netaji.

Writer

Saurabh Singh Saurabh Singh

Chief of Graphics, India Today.

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