Subhas Bose Loved an Austrian Girl and Married Her
Bose In Germany
Subhas Chandra Bose was the biggest leader of the Freedom movement and the British were always in awe of him. A reading of the biography of Bose by Arnold Toynbee brings out the fact that Bose was a charismatic leader who was also an intellectual giant.
In 1939 Bose was put under house arrest in Calcutta. He escaped and traveled the length of India to Kabul. There he was befriended by a Russian agent who helped him get to Moscow. It is not known whether Bose at any stage met Josef Stalin, but in all probability, Stalin facilitated the journey of Bose to Germany as at that time Germany and Russia were friends and after the signing of the Russo-German Non-aggression pact (1939).
Bose traveled by train across European Russia and arrived in Berlin in April 1941. He was immediately received by Von Ribbentrop the German Foreign Minister and given suitable accommodation. He was also given an office and a monthly allowance. Bose set up the India office and exhorted the Germans to help free India from British rule. This was the period when the Germans were on a high and had made ambitious plans for India.
In May 1942 Bose also met Hitler and the meeting lasted close to an hour. Bose was given the task of organizing the India legion. This was duly set up with Indian POWs who were captured in the desert campaign in North Africa.
Bose was well looked after by the Nazi's and given a luxurious villa with an SS-Chauffeured car. In an earlier visit to Germany, he had met an Austrian girl named Emile Schenski. She was born in 1910 and was an Austrian Catholic. She was introduced to Bose by a mutual friend named Dr. Mathur and Bose was smitten by her. The father of Emile was a vet.
In 1941 Bose was back in Germany and he contacted her. She moved in with Bose. As she knew shorthand, she began to help Bose in his day to day work. The Nazi leaders were aware of the relationship between Bose and Emile but turned a blind eye. Some reports suggest that Bose married Emile in a secret ceremony conducted as per Hindu rights in 1937.
Bose and Emile in Germany
Bose did not inform his immediate family and that included his elder brother Sarat Chandra Bose. Emile and Bose lived together as husband and wife during the years Bose was in Germany. She helped Bose in the India Office. By some accounts, she was not popular among the other staff who resented her comfortable life with Bose.
The union between Bose and Emile bore fruit and in November 1942 she gave birth to a daughter. She was named Anita. These were troubled times in Germany as after the initial push into Russia, the invasion had stalled. The Nazi leader thought it better to transfer Bose to the Far East to join up with the Japanese who were rapidly advancing there.
In February 1943 Bose left Germany in a German submarine for Japan. It was a hazardous voyage as Bose had to transfer in mid-ocean to a Japanese submarine at a secret rendezvous close to the island of Madagascar.
Bose promised that once India was free, he would call Emile to India. His daughter then was just 4 months old. Emile faced the situation stoically and accepted the parting as a necessity. There is no doubt that Emile and Bose had a passionate relationship and he kept this news secret from his immediate family back in India
Bose reportedly died in 1945. Anita and her mother survived the war and later Emile became the main breadwinner the family. It is on record that Emile did not marry again and died in 1995. Her daughter married a German professor and continued to live in Germany.
After initial reluctance, the Bose family accepted Emile as the wife of Bose and Sarat Chandra Bose met her in Vienna in 1948. Bose was one of the titans of the freedom movement. He was a man of great vision and intellect. His love affair with Emile is not much mentioned in India, but it is time to set the record straight. Emile was convinced that Bose died in the air crash in August 1945 and lived her life with the cherished memory of Subhas Bose, who had married her.
Some persons doubt that Bose married Emile, but that is a minor point and the issue is that Bose and Emile had a passionate relationship that survived the vicissitudes of time.