London: The mortal remains of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose should be DNA-tested to conclusively prove that he died in a plane crash in Taiwan in 1945, according to a UK-based website set up to catalogue the nationalist leader's last days.
The website called on the Indian government to approach the government of Japan regarding a DNA test of the remains of the freedom fighter which are believed to be preserved at Tokyo's Renkoji temple since September, 1945.
Bose is believed to have died in an air crash in Taiwan on August 18, 1945. "A DNA test could end the controversy over Bose's death once and for all," www.bosefiles.info said in a statement.
The website also released letters to show that as far back as September 5, 1995, Ashis Ray Bose's grandnephew and the website's creator had written to then Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao suggesting a DNA test of Bose's remains.
The letter, declassified by Prime Minister Narendra Modi last month and posted among the National Archives' files under the heading of Netaji Papers, reveals Ray pleaded with Rao for a DNA test of the remains at Renkoji temple.
After that and following telephonic contacts with British and American DNA testing organisations, on September 21, 1995 Ray apprised then external affairs minister Pranab Mukherjee on the issue.
The next day, September 22, 1995, Ray received a written communication from K Sullivan of Britain's Forensic Science Service, which stated: "Further to our telephone conversations regarding the analysis of the putative remains of Subhas Chandra Bose, I am able to confirm that a blood sample from either a nephew or niece from his sister's side of the family would be a suitable control for DNA analysis purposes".
Ray forwarded this note to Professor Anita Pfaff, the Germany-based daughter and sole heir of Bose. Thereafter, Ray sought out a son of one of Bose's sisters - the late Shanti Kumar Dutt - who was willing to fully cooperate regarding a DNA test, the website notes.
The letters to Mukherjee, from the British Forensic Science Service and Dutt have now been posted on the website.