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Rash Behari Bose

The articles below are novelized excerpts from the writings of Rash Behari Bose, which have until now remained largely inaccessible to the public due to the fact that they were originally published in old Japanese. I am writing the posts in the style of journal entries, as though Bose himself is speaking directly to you.

I am posting here regularly while I work on my project of producing English translations of the complete collection of books published by Bose in Japan.

Please note that the entries below are intended to allow my readers to follow along as I work on writing the translations. While these blog posts remain faithful to the contents of the actual books, they are not the complete, detailed and accurate translations that will appear in the finalized publication.

Copyright © 2017All written materials are the sole property of the owner.  No portion of the text may be reproduced or used in any manner without the express written permission of the author.

[Click here to read the introduction]

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The Reality Behind the Blood and Tears

The Reality Behind the Blood and Tears, Part 2 – The Hidden Face of India

Visitors to India are mesmerised by the lavish appearance of cities such as Bombay. They leave with the impression that British rule has led to the affluence and advancement of the country. However, this is a deliberately created illusion, and it is indeed the aim of Britain to invoke such a feeling of admiration.

In reality, who pays the cost of the railroad, the telephone, and all other facilities and construction projects?

Those who visit India must not stop at the level of glancing about superficially, but should look deeper to uncover the truth lying beneath the surface. Do not limit yourself to the urban areas, but travel to distant towns and villages and interact with the people there.

[…text omitted]

With each passing year, do their lives improve as one might expect? Or, on the contrary, do their lives continue to worsen?

It is globally known that India often suffers from drought. These times are like a broom of death that sweeps over the Indian people, causing famine and great suffering.

What is the source of these terrible droughts? What has been causing the rampant plague that has come to be known as the shadow of India? And, why can neither be alleviated?

There is a side of India that has been hidden.

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The Indian Struggle for Independence, The Reality Behind the Blood and Tears, Uncategorized

The Reality Behind the Blood and Tears, Part 1 – The Illusion of British Rule

Britain created a superficial appearance of affluence and success in India. Visitors would be awestruck at the sight of the luxurious British style hotels, the grand railway stations, and countless other palatial buildings. People would return to their home countries under the impression that the British had been pouring money into India, and that their rule was a splendid godsend for the Indian people.

[…text omitted]

However, beneath the distraction of  the deceptively thriving physical exterior, hid the tear and blood drenched reality. The initial illusion of prosperity was no indication of the prosperity of the Indian people. It was only a sign of the affluence enjoyed by the ruling powers as a result of their exploitation of the mass population.

We must not overlook the reality of who paid for the construction costs of the magnificent buildings that the British lived in, worked in, and rented out.  We cannot forget that while the British lived in great comfort, the Indian people suffered in appalling misery.

[…text omitted]

By imposing outrageous taxes on the public, the British snatched money from the pockets of the Indian people – the most destitute population anywhere in the world. After being drained of all they had, the people were left to suffer in crushing poverty.

This must not be ignored.

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Flying the Flag of Revolution, The Indian Struggle for Independence

Flying the Flag of Revolution, Part 5 – British Tyranny Descends on India

execution

The 1857 uprising had had ended unsuccessfully, but there was one issue that could not be overlooked.

At that time, there was much division among the various peoples and regions of India. The land was divided into more than six hundred princely states, each with its own independent ruler. They had long coexisted in relative peace, although some tensions brewed among them.

In September of that year, the British army took control of Delhi. Before long, their triumph turned into tyranny.

In order to defeat India, Britain spent over a year attempting to crush the states, but in the end they could not succeed. In the ensuing chaos, some local rulers fled deep into the jungle where they eventually fell prey to wild animals and snakes, while others were mysteriously murdered.

This was soon to be followed by unspeakable horrors all throughout the country. The brutal events that unfolded were so terrible that they would make even the bravest men shudder with fear.

Countless innocent Indian civilians were bayoneted by the furious British troops, as the soil of India was dyed red with blood. Thousands more were tied to cannons, and in a most gruesome and ghastly spectacle, their bodies were blown into fragments that were sent flying through the air.

The Anglo-Saxons preach so honourably about their humanitarianism, and yet they relentlessly committed the most outrageous atrocities against Indians, without mercy.

A general in the British Army who marched from Allahabad to Kanpur boasted about the gory sights that he encountered on his route. From every single tree that lined the road hung the corpses of Indian men, women and children of all ages. Their bodies were left brutally strung up from the branches for all to see, as a symbol of the great military prowess of the British forces.

It was a scene from hell.

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Flying the Flag of Revolution, The Indian Struggle for Independence

Flying the Flag of Revolution, Part 4 – Why Did India Lose in 1857?

In the early stages of the 1857  uprising, the British forces had only three garrisons stationed around Delhi. They came very close to being overtaken, and for a brief moment it seemed that the Indian soldiers would be victorious. However, British reinforcements soon came flooding in and the ambitious movement was suppressed. Bahadur Shah, who had been installed as king of India in Delhi, was eventually imprisoned, and his sons were sentenced to death by firing squad.

In the years that followed, historians speculated about the reasons for the failed uprising.

Some have written that the great efforts of the Indian forces were unsuccessful due to a lack of communication among the rulers of the various regions in India. They have furthermore stated that the frontlines were too spread out, making the exchange of information difficult. These have been acknowledged as core factors in the defeat of the Indian soldiers.

Some historians have also said that the British army was in an advantageous position from the very start. They had superior weapons and had established plenty of routes through which they could receive backup supplies and reinforcements. The Indian forces, on the other hand, had insufficient and outdated weapons, with no means of restocking.

The War of Independence ended unsuccessfully in 1858, twenty-eight years before I was born. It was soon followed by an onslaught of unspeakable horrors at the hands of the British forces.

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Flying the Flag of Revolution, The Indian Struggle for Independence

Flying the Flag of Revolution, Part 3 – Fighting Against British Rule

The uprising that had begun at Awadh soon spread to Meerut, and before long the effort was blazing throughout northern and central India. British authorities initially believed that the disturbance could be easily suppressed, but the movement proved to be far greater than they had anticipated.

According to British history books, this incident is known as the Indian Rebellion of 1857. However, such a name gives an inaccurate portrayal of these events. In reality, what unfolded here was a brave and valiant battle against British rule, and a fight to end their relentless control over India.

During this time, Hindus and Muslims did not work in isolation to free themselves from the evil grip of the British East India Company, but rather, all the citizens of India came together as one. As united compatriots with a common goal, they took up arms and fought side by side against the British. It was a truly magnificent event that to this very day gleams like a jewel, ornamenting the pages of Indian history.

In the early stages of the battle, the Indian mercenaries completely annihilated the British officers, and on the 11th, three mercenary units went on to occupy Meerut. All involved fought with great vigour, and their spirits soared so high that they could touch the clouds.

The units that took Meerut installed Bahadur Shah at Delhi as the king of India, and his sons as the commanders-in-chief of his forces. The struggle continued on in this manner for some months, with fierce battles being fought in various locations.

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Flying the Flag of Revolution, The Indian Struggle for Independence

Flying the Flag of Revolution, Part 2 – The War of Independence Begins

The Indian soldiers working for the British discovered that they had been deceived into using ammunition cartridges greased with the fat of cows and pigs. This was an intolerable offense, in outright disregard of the Hindu reverence for cows and the Islamic attitude towards swine. The Indian soldiers were understandably incensed, and they soon launched a mutiny.

At that time, the commander-in-chief of the British army was Major-General George Anson.  He believed that the impudent Indian soldiers could be easily suppressed, and the moment that the revolt was launched, he attempted to extinguish their uprising with a single blow.

However, the reality was that the people of India had been burning with anger and indignation for so long, and their resistance was not easy to contain. In the end, the effort at Awadh was successfully stamped out by a man named Brigadier-General Henry Montgomery Lawrence.

Little did he know that this incident was only one small spark of a much larger flame.

Just one week later, on the 10th of May, another uprising was launched at Meerut, fourty-two miles away from Delhi. In the blink of an eye, the effort had spread throughout the north, and before long had reached central India.

This marked the beginnings of the First War of Independence, and the Indian people’s courageous fight against British rule.

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Flying the Flag of Revolution, The Early Years, The Indian Struggle for Independence

Flying the Flag of Revolution, Part 1 – Deceived into Biting Cow Fat

In the last several sections, I spoke about my childhood and early involvement in the struggle for Indian independence. Before going further into my own role in the effort, I would like to go back in time and discuss the events that led up to the present revolutionary movement.

In 1857, our country was faced with a dire situation. It was as though India was a milk cow and the British East India Company was a farmer, relentlessly squeezing her dry, down to the very last drop. We all eagerly waited for the day when we would finally have the chance to rise up against their tyranny.

Then, in May the 7th Special Operations Squadron at Awadh suddenly launched a movement and flew the flag of revolution for the first time. Their uprising was triggered by rumours of a most outrageous offense. It was said that the British had been supplying Indian soldiers with the tallow of pigs and cattle, and that they had been unknowingly using this to grease their ammunition.

(Author’s note: Not only were the soldiers required to handle the ammunition, but they also needed to bite open the cartridges in order to release the gun powder, creating a most egregious situation.)

It is common knowledge that in Hinduism, cows are revered as holy gods. They are so highly venerated that they are even referred to as the mother of India. To kill these heavenly creatures and extract their fat is an unspeakably sinister crime. Moreover, in Islamic tradition the Quran gives strict warning in regard to swine.

These animals were so central to Hinduism and Islam, and yet they were being slaughtered and the people of India were being deceived into using their grease-laden cartridges. Upon hearing this grave news, it is entirely understandable and only natural that they would immediately be triggered into a furious outrage.

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