How a historian found new facts in Bose’s mystery death

JBP More's book 'Bose and his Movement: From Nazi Germany to French Indochina' has thrown new light on Subhash Chandra Bose' disappearance. Image: Manikandan R

Leon Prouchandy, of Pondicherry and Saigon, was a wealthy man. Prouchandy was, in fact, so rich he donated handsomely to Subhash Chandra Bose’s Indian National Army (INA) and the Indian Independence League (IIL). Prouchandy even gave a part of his Saigon mansion to serve as IIL’s Secretariat. As a result of his support to the Indian freedom struggle, Prouchandy was tortured so savagely by French intelligence in the 1890s that he was left in a vegetative state. His family suffered emotionally and financially. The family’s fortunes declined both in Vietnam and Pondicherry. Prouchandy’s contribution to the Indian Freedom movement still finds little mention among freedom fighters.

The family remained determined to bring to light Prouchandy’s contributions are acknowledged and he is accorded his due place in history.

Decades later, his grandson and Paris-based historian JBP More, while sifting through documents in search for answers to what Prouchandy underwent during the freedom struggle, came across facts that made him see Subhas Chandra Bose’s disappearance in a new light rejecting both the air crash theory in which Bose was believed to have died and the Russian escape theory, which says Bose fled to Russia and ultimately died there.

So, what happened to Subhas Chandra Bose?

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