Welcome Remarks by the Director during Book Discussion on 'The War Diary of Asha San: From Tokyo to Netaji's Indian National Army'


Welcome to today’s book discussion. We are discussing Lt Bharti Asha Sahay Chaudhary War Diary titled Tokyo to Netaji’s Indian National Army.

I would like to welcome Lt Bharti Asha Sahay Chaudhary, who was a part of the Rani of Jhansi Regiment, Indian National Army, set up by Subhash Chandra Bose, one of India’s greatest freedom fighters and leaders. We are thankful that despite her advanced age she is participating in today’s function.

The “War Diary” which the author kept during 1943 to 1947, this is an extremely valuable account of that unforgettable episode of freedom struggle as seen through the eyes of the young Lt Bharti who was motivated by the burning desire to serve the country, which she had never seen! Such was the influence of her father, a close associate of Neta Ji Subhash Bose on her.

She joined the INA after meeting Netaji in Tokyo in 1943. Her diary is not only a source of information but also inspiration for today’s generation. Through the diary, the reader gets glimpses of several key moments of the period: the arrival of Netaji at Tokyo in 1943, the Battle of Imphal the arrival of Netaji’s ashes in Tokyo and glimpses of life in Japan after the surrender.

I would like to welcome Mr Sanjay Chaudhary, her son and Ms Tanvi Srivastava, who has translated the Diary into English. Tanvi Srivastava is a fiction writer, a travel entrepreneur and a member of Ashaji’s family. Tanvi has done a great job in translating the diary with great sensitivity. I also welcome other friends and members of Ashaji’s family who has joined us today.

To offer their comments of the book, we have three distinguished panellists; Sh Raghvendra Singh, Senior Fellow, VIF; Lt Gen Rakesh Sharma, Distinguished Fellow, VIF, and Prof Sujit Dutta, Distinguished Fellow, VIF and the Editor of the VIF’s quarterly journal National Security.

Thank You

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