Seeking a review of the government's decision to not include veterans from the Indian National Army (INA) in this year's Republic Day Parade, Major-General (Dr) G D Bakshi, on Thursday has written to the Prime Minister's office seeking the veterans' inclusion, on Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose's 123rd birth anniversary - January 23. Stating that the Army was in touch with eight INA veterans, six of whom were residing in Delhi, he requested the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to institutionalise the parade arrangement. In a historic first four INA veterans had participated in the Republic Day Parade in 2019.
The Republic Day parade is upon us. The Army is awaiting orders for the participation of the INA veterans in the parade this year. I am attaching the list of INA veterans - including Lady officers from Rani of Jhansi regt - 6 INA vets are in Delhi itself. Kindly do tell MoD to institutionalise this parade arrangement till as long as the vets are with us. Please do get Netaji's statue installed under that empty canopy sir- it will be the greatest and the most VISIBLE tribute to the most UNSUNG national hero. It will cost so little but achieve so much!!
List of INA vets
The other three veterans from last year's Republic Day parade are in touch with you -Shri Lalti Ram Ji,Shri Parmanand Yadav ji, Shri Jagram are in your touch. Total we now have 11 INA veterans in our knowledge, out of which 6 are Delhi based.
Maj Gen (Dr) GD Bakshi
The four INA Veterans - Parmanand Yadav, Lalit Ram, Hira Singh and Bhagmal aged 109, 108, 99 and 98 had fought World War II, were seated in jeeps that marched past Rajpath during the Republic Day parade in 2019. Of the four, the youngest Sep Bhagmal passed away recently. While the government had included their participation last year, in a move to give due credit to Subhas Chandra Bose, this year's snub has been viewed as a stepback - recalling the British empire's stigma against the INA.
Founded in 1942 by Ras Bihari Bose, INA was led into war by Netaji who had fought fierce battles with the British till Independence. However, the INA soldiers were not allowed to merge with the Indian Army due to certain policies of the government at that time. The previous year had finally given INA its true recognition.