Rajinikanth to meet fans on Dec 26; political entry announcement expected

Actor Rajinikanth is all set to meet his fans for six days, beginning December 26, giving rise to expectations that he might finally announce his long expected political entry

Rajinikanth, who has stridden the Tamil cine world like a colossus for the past four decades and enjoys almost a demigod-like status among his legion of followers, might make public his political entry during his address to fans.

"There is an expectation that he will spell out his stand on entering politics. He may do it or may not...only he knows...let no one speculate," a senior functionary of the All India Rajinikanth Fans Welfare Club told PTI.

The 67-year-old actor, whose second look poster of "Kaala" was released on his birthday on December 12, is scheduled to address his fans on December 26 and 31, the opening and valedictory sessions which might be tweaked if warranted.

The possibility of his entry into politics has been debated for about two decades, but has revived now in view of a perceived political vacuum in Tamil Nadu after the demise of late Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa. DMK chief M Karunanidhi is also not active in politics due to ill health.

Rajinikanth had in 1996 famously said that even "God cannot save Tamil Nadu if Jayalalithaa is voted back" to lead the state.

The actor's opposition to Jayalalithaa was seen as one factor which helped catapult the main opposition party to power in the assembly elections that year.

Since then, his fans have urged him to enter politics and and expectations have risen among political observers.

Reviving anticipation of his imminent political entry, the actor had said in May that the "system is rotten" despite the presence of "efficient" leaders like DMKs M K Stalin and PMK's Anbumani Ramadoss.

Countering opposition from some pro-Tamil quarters that he is a non Tamil (since he has Marathi roots and Karnataka origin), he had then asserted that he was a "pachai Tamizhan (pure Tamilian)."

Addressing his fans in May for a similar photo-op, Rajinikanth had said, "Let us face the war when it comes" which was seen as an indication that he might enter politics.

Rajinikanth met fans from as many as 16 districts during summer.

Next week, he is scheduled to meet fans covering as many as 18 districts, which includes Chennai and Kancheepuram.

Rajinikanth is scheduled to meet about 900-1000 fans during the six days ending December 31. The session is scheduled to begin by 7 AM and go on till about 3 PM.

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel