On 29 December 1943, Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose arrived at Port Blair in Andaman and Nicobar Islands. He came here for 03 days. On 30 December 1943, Netaji unfurled the tricolor at the Gymkhana Ground. Today is its 78th anniversary.
Japan occupied this island in the second world war. It was captured in 1942, which lasted till 1945. On 29 December, he handed it over to the Azad Hind government of Subhas Chandra Bose. However, Japan’s de facto control over it remained.
First Dutch and then British occupation, then the Japanese occupation
By the way, this island was first occupied by Holland. Then went under British control. Then the Japanese won it in the second world war. When Japan lost in the Second World War, it returned to Britain.
Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose named Andaman as Shaheed Dweep
When Subhash Chandra Bose unfurled the tricolor on 30 December 1943, he named Andaman Shaheed and Nicobar Swaraj. The tricolor that Subhash had opened was the same tricolor adopted by the Congress, with a spinning wheel on the white stripe in the middle. After this, the Azad Hind government made General Lokanathan its governor here. After independence from the British government in 1947, it is a union territory of India.
Netaji had said that we would be on Indian soil
Netaji had earlier said in his speeches in Japan and Singapore that the Azad Hind Fauj would step on Indian soil by the end of this year. When he reached Port Blair, he went to the Cellular Jail and paid tribute to the Indian revolutionaries and martyrs who were once imprisoned here.
Then what speech did Subhash give?
Subhash stayed here for three days after hoisting the Indian tricolor on Andaman. He reached Singapore on 01 January. In a speech in Singapore, he said, the Azad Hind Fauj will awaken that flame of revolution in India, in which the British Empire will be burnt to ashes. The Interim Azad Hind Government, under whose authority today is the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, has been recognized by nine great countries of the world, including Germany and Japan. He has also promised full support to our army.
What is the meaning of Andaman?
The word Anman comes from the Malay language word Handuman which is a modified form of the name of the Hindu deity Hanuman. The word Nicobar is also derived from this language which means the land of naked people. There are 572 islands here, one more than the other in beauty.
An island here named after Subhas Chandra Bose
There is an island here, also known as Subhas Chandra Bose Dweep. It is famous for the ruins of British architecture. This island is spread over 200 acres. Many birds live here.
What is its importance in the freedom struggle?
This place was used by the British rule to keep the revolutionaries away from India under the repressive policies in the freedom movement. For this reason, this place was known as Kala Pani among the agitators. A separate prison, the Cellular Jail, was built in Port Blair for the imprisonment, similar to Siberia for British India.
There are 694 cells inside this jail. The purpose of making these cells was to prevent the mutual interaction of prisoners. Only three parts of this vast prison, spread over seven branches like an octopus, are left. The names of the brave martyrs are written on the prison walls. There is also a museum here where the weapons with which the freedom fighters were tortured can be seen.