{ Page-Title / Story-Title }

Article Tamil

'Step aside', says Rajinikanth to fans looking to gain political mileage

Actor Rajinikanth on Monday sent out a strong message to some of his fans who were looking to misuse his name for their own political advantage.

Our Correspondent

It was a special day for Rajinikanth fans in Chennai today. The Tamil superstar met his fans at a public gathering in the city. However, the Kabali star had a word of warning for those looking to extract political advantage from his popularity. 

His popular standing and mass following have ensured that rumours of political entry always surround Rajinikanth. However, the actor has constantly sought to stay out of the limelight, and maintain a friendly status quo with everyone in the industry. Speaking to fans and media at the event, the superstar said, "There are some who say that when it comes to politics, Rajinikanth will hesitate. He is creating an illusion to make his fans watch his films. Twenty one years ago, I made a decision. I would call that a political accident. There was a situation in which I expressed my support to an alliance. The people of Tamil Nadu, who I consider my Gods, also extended support to that alliance and made it win. From that point on, my name has been dragged into politics." 

The reference made by the actor leads back to the 1996 Tamil Nadu Assembly elections, where he had openly expressed opposition to the ruling AIADMK party, run by the late J Jayalalithaa. Rajinikanth had, then, made a statement saying, 'even god cannot save Tamil Nadu' if Jayalalithaa returned to power. The resultant defeat of the AIADMK proved the influence wielded by the actor. After the demise of the former chief minister, J Jayalalithaa, recently, the actor had expressed regret at the statement. 

It was this moment that has led to consistent rumours about him joining politics, said the actor. Rajinikanth said, "Some of those claiming to be my fans too got involved in politics enthusiastically. The politicians used these people, and these people too used the politicians. Some of them even made money. Just like a cat that has tasted milk, in every election after that, those people solicited the help of these people and likewise. For their own personal gains, they would say that I had said something. As a result, every time there was an election, I was pushed to take the stand that I am not supporting anybody."

He also said, "Several fans write letters to me asking, 'Do we stay just as fans? When do we progress? People who were born before us wear white dresses and travel in Innovas. They become councillors and MLAs and ministers. When do we become all that? When do we make money? When do we buy two-three properties? They write letters like these to me and even give interviews to newspapers. It's not wrong to want to become a councillor or an MLA or a minister. But I do not know whether to feel angry or sad or laugh about their desire to make money using such positions." 

The rumours surrounding his entry into politics have only increased since he met with Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently. However, the actor had clarified that it was a strictly 'non-political' meeting. Rajinikanth added, "I repeat what I have been saying earlier. My life is in the hands of God. I want to keep my body clean and soul pure. I am a tool in God's hands. He is making use of me. He is using me as an actor now, I am acting as an actor. I do not know what he will use me as tomorrow. Whatever he chooses to use me as, I will do it with justice, sincerity, honesty and with a conscience. I do not know what his plans for me for tomorrow are. It is only in God's hands." 

However, Rajinikanth had a warning for those who wished to gain some benefits from his political standing. In a clear statement, the actor warned that he will not entertain anyone who 'harbours such intentions'. Rajinikanth said, "So, to all those who harbour such intentions, let me make it clear now itself. If I say I will not come to politics, you will feel cheated. If suppose, there is a situation where I have to come to politics, I will not even permit these kind of people near me. I will not even allow you to enter. So, such people please step aside or you could feel cheated," the star said.

The actor is currently finishing up the schedule of S Shankar's 2.0 with Akshay Kumar, before he starts work on his next project with Pa Ranjith.