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Vezo Swuro

(1928 – ★) – (Nagaland)

Shri Vezo Swuro, originally from Chesezu village in the Pehk District of Nagaland, India, is located 56 kilometers away from the state capital, Kohima. Born in 1928, he was the first retired teacher from Chesezu village employed by the government. It is believed that he had a close relationship with Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. Shri Vezo asserts that he met Netaji in early April 1944 when he was 16 years old. Netaji’s camp was close to Vezo’s residence, and he, along with a friend, visited the camp at the invitation of Bose, armed with spades. From then on, they worked in Netaji’s camp, hidden within dense bamboo groves, narrowly escaping two British Air Force bombings due to the camp’s inconspicuous location. Vezo and his companion were enthusiastic about contributing to Bose’s cause, constructing bunkers in the camp.

Vezo vividly remembers the spot where Netaji rested and interacted with villagers. Despite the language barrier, he collected fruits, berries from the forest, and items requested by Netaji. He also served as a guide for Netaji, showing him around the village to survey the surroundings. During the Japanese and INA’s stay, the villagers of Chesezu donated 300 tons of rice to the troops. In return, Netaji promised to establish schools, hospitals, roads, and agricultural machinery if they won the war. After a short stay, the British attacked Chesezu village, targeting the Dak Bungalow. Fortunately, Netaji had left the Bungalow before the assault in May 1944.

Mr. Vezo recalls the anxiety and concern he and the villagers felt for Netaji during the war, given their substantial support to the Japanese and INA. Now, at the age of 94, Mr. Vezo Swuro still cherishes his friendship with Netaji and holds onto the hope that Netaji’s promises will be fulfilled. He remains the sole survivor connected to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose from Chesezu village during his stay from early April to the end of May.