Film actor Rajinikanth has also jumped into the political arena.
Even God cannot save Tamil Nadu if Jayalalithaa comes back to power,” were Rajinikanth’s thundering words in 1996.
That played a significant part in propelling the DMK-TMC alliance to power in Tamil Nadu that year, swaddling Jayalalithaa in ignominy. That was also the inception point of what became not just a state-wide but national fixation over guessing when the actor would turn to politics.
In Kabali, released in 2016, Rajinikanth, playing the title role of a veteran don, asks one of the villains after bashing him, to convey a message to his bosses.
Naan Vanthutenu sollu. Thirumbi Vanthutenu. 25 varushathuku munnadi eppadi ponaro Kabali Appadiye thirumbi vanthutaannu solu Tell them I have returned. And I am back in the same form that I had 25 years ago when I left.
Now do your math. With Rajinikanth announcing he will launch a political party in January, he could well be saying the Kabali punch dialogue to the politicians on the Tamil Nadu stage. “I have returned, just the same, no difference from 25 years ago when I left.
Except that 2021 is so very different from 1996 when Rajinikanth first played footsie with the idea of politics. He turns 70 next week, and cannot be expected to take the strain of a hectic election campaign schedule.
The announcement today of his political premiere came even as there have been reports on pressure being exerted on him to become a formal politician.