During the Second World War he founded an army of Indian soldiers, previously part of the British Indian Army, imprisoned by the Japanese. Having rallied them from Japanese internment camps as well as other Southeast Asian villages, Bose's Indian National Army, allied and funded by Japan and the Axis powers, fought the British Indian Army. With the defeat of Japan, the Indian National Army was disintegrated.
He coined the nationalist phrase "Jai Hind" which later achieved popularity as a patriotic salutation in independent India. He labeled Mahatma Gandhi the 'father of the nation'. In India, he is widely respected and hailed as a patriot and national hero, who stood against the British colonial forces.
- Give me blood and I shall give you freedom!
- As soldiers, you will always have to cherish and live up to the three ideals of faithfulness, duty and sacrifice. Soldiers who always remain faithful to their nation, who are always prepared to sacrifice their lives, are invincible. If you, too, want to be invincible, engrave these three ideals in the innermost core of your hearts.
- I have no doubt in my mind that our chief national problems relating to the eradication of poverty, illiteracy and disease and the scientific production and distribution can be tackled only along socialistic lines.
- Nationalism is inspired by the highest ideals of the human race, satyam [the true], shivam [the god], sundaram [the beautiful]. Nationalism in India has ... roused the creative faculties which for centuries had been lying dormant in our people.
- Gird up your loins for the task that now lies ahead. I had asked you for men, money and materials. I have got them in generous measure. Now I demand more of you. Men, money and materials cannot by themselves bring victory or freedom. We must have the motive-power that will inspire us to brave deeds and heroic exploits.
- It is our duty to pay for our liberty with our own blood. The freedom that we shall win through our sacrifice and exertions, we shall be able to preserve with our own strength.
- No real change in history has ever been achieved by discussions.
- We should have but one desire today ? the desire to die so that India may live ? the desire to face a martyr's death, so that the path to freedom may be paved with the martyr's blood.
- One individual may die for an idea; but that idea will, after his death, incarnate itself in a thousand lives. That is how the wheel of evolution moves on and the ideas and dreams of one nation are bequeathed to the next
- Freedom is not given, it is taken
- "Reality is, after all, too big for our frail understanding to fully comprehend. Nevertheless, we have to build our life on the theory which contains the maximum truth.We cannot sit still because we cannot, or do not , know the Absolute Truth."
- "You will readily understand my mental condition as I stand on the threshold of what the man-in-the-street would call a promising career.There is much to be said favour of such a service. It solves once for all what is paramount problem for each of us—the problem of bread and butter.One has not to go face life with risk or uncertainty as to success or failure. But for a man of my temperament who has been feeding on ideas which might be called eccentric—the line of least resistance is not the best to follow. Life loses half its interest if there is no struggle—if there are no risks to be taken. The uncertainties of life are not appalling to one who has not, at heart, worldly ambitions. Moreover , it is not possible to serve one's country in the best and fullest manner if one is chained to the Civil Service . In short , national and spiritual aspirations are not compatible with obedience to Civil Service Examinations."
- "It is only on the basis of undiluted Nationalism and of perfect justice and impartiality that the Indian Army of Liberation can be built up."
- "When we stand, the Azad Hind Fauz has to be like a wall of granite; when we march, the Azad Hind Fauz has to be like a steamroller."
- "India is calling Blood is calling to blood. Get up, we have no time to lose. Take up your arms ! we shall carve our way through the enemy's ranks, or if God wills, we shall die a martyr's death. And in our last sleep we shall kiss the road that will bring our Army to Delhi. The road to Delhi is the road to Freedom. Chalo Delhi (March to Delhi)."