Having been schooled in Cuttack, Orissa, where his father worked as a lawyer, Subhas Chandra Bose went to Calcutta in 1913 and joined Presidency College. In 1916, Bose was expelled for his complicity in beating a college tutor, Professor Oaten, whom he had heard had manhandled some Indian students. Bose had been involved in student political groups in Calcutta and received much sympathy for his expulsion. He joined Scottish Church College and graduated in 1919 with a degree in philosophy.
Bose's father proposed to send him to England to study for the Indian Civil Service (ICS). Despite Bose's misgivings about accepting a job under the British Government, he set sail for England in September 1919. Upon arriving in Britain, Bose went up to Cambridge to gain admission. He managed to gain entry to Fitzwilliam Hall, a body for non-collegiate members of the University. Bose took the Mental and Moral Sciences Tripos and studied for the Civil Service exams. He attended the Cambridge Union Society debates and was a member of the Cambridge Majlis. He gave evidence to the Lytton Committee investigating Indian students in the UK, and appealed to the India Office to allow Indians to join the University Officers' Training Corps (without success).
In July 1920, Bose took the ICS exams in London and came fourth. Bose then faced a dilemma as to whether to take up this opportunity and sought advice from his family through correspondence to India. Finally in April 1921, Bose withdrew from taking up this post with the ICS and returned to India in the summer of 1921.
In Calcutta, Bose joined the Indian National Congress and worked with the Bengali leader C. R. Das. Bose was in and out of jail in the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s for his political action (often violent) against the British. In the meantime, he rose through the Congress ranks, working with Nehru, and became president of Congress in 1938. Successful again in 1939 against Gandhi's candidate, Bose then resigned over the selection of the working committee.
In 1941, Bose managed to leave India through Afghanistan. In 1943, Bose was in Japan and supported the Prime Minister's efforts to reconstitute the Indian National Army (INA) and set up the 'Azad Hind' or Free India provisional government. In 1944, the INA and Japanese invaded India but suffered a heavy defeat. Bose fled and was killed in a plane crash over Taiwan in August 1945 - although many of his followers remain(ed) doubtful as to the cause of his death, wondering if he had managed to escape the crash.