Talk of Rajinikanth joining the BJP heats up: Will he or won’t he?
“Will he, won’t he?” has been the million dollar question related to Tamil superstar Rajinikanth for over 25 years. The question clearly is about his entry in politics. all these years, it’s been a part of the Rajini legend.
The question rises as a statewide thing yet again. Rajnikanth new movie titled Lingaa going to release next month. On occasion of audio launch of the movie, speakers from the industry repeated their plea to him to join politics.
In response, he didn’t rule out the possibility. Neither did he show any clue that he would drop. “Politics is dangerous and deep. I am not afraid of politics, but hesitant. In politics, you need strong roots,” Times of India quoted him as saying.
“I am a product of circumstances. So, if a situation arises, I could enter politics. I am only hesitant because I know the depth of politics. I have to step on so many shoulders,” reported The Hindu.
We have heard this on many occasions before. In his films, he would be more explicit to the point of his fans expecting a decision soon. But when the film’s vanity wears off, the expectations also die down. The actor would go back to his usual elusive self until he makes another larger than life film.
The expectations of him joining politics are also high this time because the BJP leaders have been making noises to own him. They say that he is close to the national leaders of the party including Narendra Modi, and his sympathies are with the party. Modi had made a point to visit him at his Poes Garden residence during the Lok Sabha elections. Last month, the state president of the BJP Tamilisai Soundararajan also visited him. A few months ago, she had told reporters that Rajini is in the good books of the BJP and he was welcome to join the party.
This is not the first time that BJP is keen for the superstar. Rajini, however, refused to endorse the AIADMK-BJP front, but did say that personally he would vote for the BJP. That was the first time he came out openly in support of the party.
Since then, he has not been explicit about his affiliation and was hardly a political factor in 2009 and 2011.
The main reason for the expectations of his political entry is his “punch dialogues”. In Muthu, which was released in 1995, when there was enormous pressure on him to join politics because of the unpopular regime of Jayalalithaa, he said: “No one can tell when or how I’ll arrive; but I always do, when the time is right”. It was the closest to his entering politics.
Two years later, in Arunachalam, he continued the enigma by saying, “God commands and I obey”. In another two years, he said in Padayappa, “My way is my own”. And one of his most popular “punch dialogues” to date, which apparently is a personal favourite of Rajini is this: “If I say something once, it’s like saying a 100 times”. Read in the context of Tamil Nadu politics and the expectations from him, they drive his fans crazy.
Apparently, his Lingaa, which is going to release also has a lot of such one liners. His fans and others will certainly watch them with a lot of expectation. With hardly any anti-incumbency sentiment against Jayalalithaa, there is no political compulsion on him to join politics, but BJP wants him to build the party in the state. Lingaa is likely to generate a new round of expectations, which incidentally will be good for the business of the movie.