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'He-Man' Dharmendra joins BJP

March 24, 2004 15:09 IST
Last Updated: March 24, 2004 16:56 IST

Following in the footsteps of wife Hema Malini, matinee idol Dharmendra on Wednesday joined the Bharatiya Janata Party.
There were indications that he may be fielded from the Jat-dominated Bikaner constituency in Rajasthan in the coming Lok Sabha election.

Popularly known as 'Garam-Dharam' for his macho image, Dharmendra said he was motivated to join the party primarily because of the statesmanship shown by Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in bringing about a thaw in Indo-Pak ties.

"A match [played] in Lahore today looks as if it is being played in Ludhiana," said Dharmendra, whose role as the drunkard mercenary 'Veeru' in blockbuster <i>Sholay</i> made him a household name.

Though his praise of Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf and his promise to take 'minorities' above 'the majority' did
appear embarrassing for the leaders present on the occasion, highly placed sources said the actor was certain to be fielded from Rajasthan.

Besides party president M Venkaiah Naidu, those present included Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje Scindia, party general secretary Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and Union Law and Commerce Minister Arun Jaitley.


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