DISCLAIMER: We don’t endorse or support any of these theories. This article is only meant to inform that these may have been the reasons behind the following unexplained events.
Over the course of history, especially during the last century or so, many unexplained events and incidents have chosen India as the stage. Man is curious by nature, and the uncertain nature of events pushes us to find alternate explanations to rationalize things beyond our understanding. That is how conspiracy theories are conceived. There’s no concrete proof to verify these theories, but they’re fascinating nonetheless.Here are 7 conspiracy theories that are bound to leave you baffled:
1. The deaths of martyrs Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev Thapar and Shivaram Rajaguru
Could Gandhi have saved them?
Scheduled to be hanged to death on 24th March for the Lahore Conspiracy case involving the killing of Officer John Saunders, they were instead hanged a day earlier on 23rd March 1931. There have been many conspiracy theories to explain this. One theory says that Mahatma Gandhi had the choice of saving these brave men, but did not do enough before signing the Gandhi-Irwin pact. But to that, Gandhi supporters say that he did not have enough influence on the British to stop the hanging.
Was Gandhi a co-conspirator in their deaths?
There is another theory according to which, Gandhi conspired with the British to execute Bhagat Singh, as he was a threat to the Mahatma’s ideologies. Then again, many say that his leadership was never under threat and he would not have gained anything from it in any way.
Were they never hanged, but shot by the Saunders family, for revenge, instead?
A third theory also exists. A book titled Some Hidden Facts: Martyrdom of Shaheed Bhagat Singh- Secrets unfurled by an Intelligence Bureau Agent of British-India by K.S. Kooner and G.S. Sindhra, states that the 3 prisoners were hung in a manner that they were in semi conscious state and taken outside the prison to be shot by members of the Saunder’s family for revenge.
Why were the bodies cremated in secret?
Further doubt arises as to how they died since their bodies were not sent to their families, instead the jail authority broke the rear wall, cremated the bodies secretly in the dark and threw the ashes into the Sutlej River.
2. The death of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose
Did he even die?
In August, 1945, Netaji boarded a flight that had taken various stops on route to Darein as he was headed to the Soviet Union. The plane stopped one final time at Taipei, Taiwan (then Taihoku, Formosa), but right after take off, it crashed and Bose emerged from it with 3rd degree burns and succumbed to his injuries later.
But then, none of his companions who were left behind saw any body, photographs or a death certificate. Within hours of his reported demise, conspiracy theories rose that he was still alive. This wasn’t the first time he would have mysteriously disappeared. So there were reasons to believe that he faked his own death.
A companion met him a year after he ‘died.’
His bodyguard, who turned 102 in 2006, mentioned that he met Bose a year after the alleged crash in Thailand. He had mastered the art of disguise having tricked the British countless times. There are also rumours that he attended Gandhiji’s funeral as a sadhu in Delhi in 1948. A party called the ‘Subhasbadi Janata’, claimed that he was the chief sadhu of an ashram in Shaulmari. The sadhu in question forever denied being the real Subhas Chandra Bose and died in 1977.
Who was Gumnami Baba?
It was later said that Bose had settled in Faizabad disguised as a sadhu by the name of Gumnami Baba. The remaining members of the Bose family were approached for donating a milliliter of a blood for matching their DNA with that of the Gumnami Baba. However the results were negative. (the pic below is only for representational purpose.)
3. The death of Lal Bahadur Shastri
Why was there no post-mortem?
The second Prime Minister of India, originator of the popular phrase, “Jai Jawaan, Jai Kisan”, died on 11th January 1966. He was in Tashkent to formally end the 1965 war with Pakistan with the signing of the Tashkent Agreement with Ayub Khan. It is claimed that he died of a heart attack, however, there was no post-mortem conducted. His son Sunil asked why his body had dark blue spots and cuts on the abdomen if not autopsy was performed, but that went in vain. His personal physician confirmed he had no sign of heart trouble before.
Why weren’t the RTIs answered?
RTIs were filed pertaining to documents related to the cause of death but the PMO said there was only one classified document which was exempted from disclosure as it could cause international disharmony and spoil foreign relations. The Home Ministry referred the matter to the National Archives and the Delhi Police for retrieving any documents or information based on the incident. His son Sunil claimed it was absurd how the death of a sitting Prime Minister was looked into by district level police instead of higher authorities.
What about the word of a CIA agent?
Gregory Douglas, a journalist, interviewed CIA operative Robert Crowley, who confirmed that the death of the Prime Minister and Dr Homi Bhabha (father of Nuclear Science in India) was the work of the CIA. As Shastri wanted to go ahead with nuclear tests, the US got wary of India emerging as a reformed state and also of Indo-Russian dominance in the region.
4. Death of Homi Jehangir Bhabha
How come there was no debris of the Air India flight 101?
The flight had reportedly crashed near Mont Blanc on 24 January, 1966 but there was no debris found. If anything was recovered, it was an Indian diplomatic jute bag marked Ministry of External Affairs, Delhi; containing newspapers, calendars and a personal letter. What is weird is that the bag was found in 2012. And anyway, it was a type ‘c’ bag and therefore, held no important documents.
The control tower had confirmation that the flight had no technical problems. Was it sabotage?
The flight was piloted by one of the most experienced pilots of Air India, who had radioed the control tower that all instruments were working fine. The plane was flying at 19,000 feet, at least 3,000 feet above the Mont Blanc summit and a few minutes later it crashed right into it. Was there a sabotage? It is said that there was a bomb in the luggage compartment that went off, forcing the flight to crash and killing everyone on board.
A CIA agent confirmed sabotage.
The same CIA agent, Robert Crawley, who had confirmed that the death of Lal Bahadur Shastri was planned by the US, said that Homi Bhabha’s death too was part of the same plot. The reason being the same: India’s rise to nuclear power. Everyone knew that Dr Homi Bhabha was the father of Indian nuclear physics. He and Shastri were both in favour of India being a nuclear power, which threatened the US and thus, the CIA stepped in to sabotage the Air India flight 101, killing Bhabha and 116 others.
5. The Nehru-Gandhi dynasty
Jawaharlal Nehru’s affairs
It is said that Panditji had several affairs, few of them being with Edwina Mountbatten (wife of Lord Mountbatten), Padmaja Naidu (Sarojini Naidu’s daughter) and Shraddha Mata. Shraddha Mata had delivered a still born child in a catholic hospital in Bangalore and was looked after by Dr Ezekiel. After her departure to Delhi, Dr Ezekiel recovered letters that she had forgotten to carry with her, which were revealed to have been written by PM Nehru.
Indira converted to Islam after marrying Feroze.
It is believed that Indira Nehru, had changed her name to Maimuna Begum after being wed to Feroze Gandhi. But Jawaharlal Nehru opposed this, seeing that their stature in Indian politics was of prime concern, so he asked them to adopt the surname Gandhi. Feroze was believed to be Parsi and his surname was Gandhy. But since ‘Gandhi’ as a surname was more influential, the couple adopted that and even performed a mock vedic marriage in India.
The death of Sanjay Gandhi
Some believe that Sanjay had learnt of his biological father, who was another Muslim man and not Feroze. This led to him blackmailing his mother Indira Gandhi and also controlling the political scenario during the emergency. However, his death raised more questions. He died of a plane crash that had no explosion apparently. The reason was cited to be head injury. But due to his ideologies not being in sync with the part or his mother’s, conspiracy theorists believed that his death was not an accident but part of a plot by members of his own party.
6. The death of Dr Syama Prasad Mookerji
Syama Prasad Mookerji was a great politician in his own right. He had resigned from Nehru’s first cabinet and formed Bharatiya Jana Sangh. He was against Congress’s decision of opting for an independent status, a different emblem and a separate Prime Minister to Kashmir. He was arrested when he entered Kashmir for a rally in 1953 and was admitted to a hospital 90 days after for being ill. However, there was no post mortem performed on his body and it was sent directly to Kolkata and not Delhi. His mother’s repeated requests were ignored by Nehru and later PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee stated that Dr Mookerjee died due to negligence committed by Jawahar Lal Nehru.
This conspiracy theory isn’t a part of India’s history per se, but in another 50 years, it will be.
7. The death of Ajmal Kasab
Why was he executed before Afzal Guru?
Afzal Guru who had been arrested in 2001 for his role in the attack on the Parliament, was tried in 2002. Whereas, Kasab was arrested in 2008. Why did his execution precede Guru’s? He had been tried 6 years after Guru’s arrest. Though the time gap between their execution was only a few months but if the mercy petition of both the convicts was to be rejected, shouldn’t have Guru’s turn come first? Unless, there was something that was kept secret as to why Ajmal Kasab’s execution happened before Afzal Guru’s.
Why take him to Pune to be hanged?
The government had already spent crores for keeping Kasab in a high security prison in Mumbai’s Arthur Road jail. When the time for his execution neared, he was suddenly transferred to Yerwada Jail in Pune, which also facilitates hanging procedures and he was hanged the very next day on 21st Novemeber, 2012. Though bringing the hangman to Mumbai seemed more prudent, they took Kasab to Pune instead. Why exactly was this step necessary? Why not do it in Mumbai itself? When he was brought to Pune only the jail superintendent was informed of his identity and no one else.
Why all the secrecy? Was he even hanged or did he die of dengue?
It is said that Kasab was suffering from Dengue and had actually died due to not being treated properly. He may have just been buried in Pune instead of being hanged in either of the cities. The hanging was so secretive that even top leaders of the UPA like Sonia Gandhi were informed when the news came on TV. What baffled most conspiracy theorists was that the government had invested so much time and money in protecting Kasab and then suddenly announced his death over the news. Once his mercy petition was rejected, his execution was due and the decision was made public. Then why would you suddenly execute him secretly? Unless he had already succumbed to the disease and there was no other option left but to stage a hanging in a different city. There are however no doubts that his fate was sealed, it was the manner in which things unfolded that tickled the fancies of conspiracy theorists.