With Assembly election due in summer next year, noted Tamil film actor Rajnikanth on Thursday announced his plan to plunge into politics. He said that he would be forming his own political party on New Year’s eve.
Though he is 70 years old and doctors have advised him not to take exertion as he had undergone kidney transplant recently, Rajnikanth has given enough indications to take part in the next year’s Assembly election. His new party may contest in all the 234 seats.
Till now he is considered close to the ruling AIADMK and the BJP. Deputy chief minister O Panneerselvam as well as its alliance partner in the last Lok Sabha poll, the BJP, has welcomed his decision. Both these parties are struggling for a figure having mass appeal.
Stating that it is now or never, Rajnikanth said that he would go against the advice of the doctors and is ready to bet his life for the Tamil people.
Rajnikanth in August 2019 supported the Union government’s move to abrogate Article 370 and equated Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Krishna and Home Minister Amit Shah with Arjun.
Early in February this year he threw his weight behind the Citizenship Amendment Act.
As Tamil Nadu would be going for the Assembly election for the first time after the death of the then chief minister J Jayalalithaa and DMK supremo M Karunanidhi political observers are closely watching Rajnikanth’s move to change everything by introducing spiritual secular politics.
In the last year’s Lok Sabha poll, the AIADMK-BJP alliance was virtually wiped out as it could win only one parliamentary seat. The DMK, Congress and Left alliance made a clean sweep. The saffron party would certainly like Rajnikanth to bail it out, though he is now a bit old and may actually not be able to campaign as he is claiming now.
On the other hand, another film actor Kamal Haasan, a critic of PM Modi, has also thrown his hat in the ring by forming his own political party, Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM).