ON ASSUMING DIRECT COMMAND OF I.N.A.
Order of the Day, August 26 1943
ln the interest of the Indian Independence Movement and of the Azad Hind Fauj, I have taken over the direct command of our Army from this day.
This is for me a matter of joy and pride, because for an Indian there can be no greater honour than to be Commander of India’s Army of Liberation. But I am conscious of the magnitude of the task that I have undertaken and I am weighed down with a sense of responsibility. I pray that God may give me the necessary strength to fulfil my duty to Indians, under all circumstances, however difficult or trying they may be.
I regard myself as the servant of the 38 crores of my countrymen, who profess different religious faiths. I am determined to discharge my duties in such a manner that the interests of these 38 crores may be safe in my hands and every single Indian will have reason to put complete faith in me. It is only on the basis of undiluted nationalism and perfect justice and impartiality that India’s Army of Liberation can be built up.
In the coming struggle or the emancipation of our motherland, for the establishment of a Government of Free India based on the goodwill of 38 crores of Indians and for the creation of a permanent army which will guarantee Indian independence for all times, the Azad Hind Fauj has a vital role to play. To fulfil this role we must weld ourselves into an army that will have only one goal, namely the freedom of Indians, and only one will, namely to do or die in the cause of India’s freedorn. When we stand, the Azad Hind Fauj has to be like a wall of granite ; when we march, the Azad Hind Fauj has to be like a steamroller.
Our task is not an easy one ; the war will be long and hard, but I have complete faith in thc justice and invincibility of our cause. Thirty-eight crores of human beings, who form about one-fifth of the human race, have a right to be free and they are now ready to pay the price of freedom. There is consequently no power on earth that can deprive us of our birthright of liberty any longer.
Comrades, ofiicers and men ! With your unstinted support and unflinching loyalty, the Azad Hind Fauj will become the instrurnent of India’s liberation. Ultimately victory will certainly be ours, I assure you.
With the slogan ‘Onward to Delhi’ on our lips, let us continue to fight till our National Flag flies over the Viceroy’s House in New Delhi, and the Azad Hind Fauj holds its victory parade inside the ancient Red Fortress of the Indian metropolis.