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Kamal goes the Rajni way?
N Sathiya Moorthy |
May 02, 2003 11:45 IST
If imitation is the best form of flattery, then Kamal Haasan may idolise Rajnikanth.
Addressing a May Day function organised by his fans in Chennai, Kamal Haasan said he was ready to support and campaign for any political party that did not make caste or religion its plank and agenda.
"They should be genuine," he said, after distributing aid to the poor at a well-attended function at the Madurai Medical College.
His announcement comes at a time when Tamil Nadu's ruling party, the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, is showing a Hindutva streak.
Not everyone sees Kamal Haasan's announcement in isolation. Critics cite recent box-office failures like Aalavandan and Hey! Ram as the reason for his sudden interest in politics. With subsequent light-hearted comedies like Pammal K Sambandam and Thenali not faring too well either, they feel a brush with politics may be his attempt to retain the younger generation that is increasingly opting for younger stars.
His new film Sandiyar was launched in Madurai, otherwise known as Tamil Nadu's movie capital.
Coincidentally Madurai is also the main centre for state politics, with most major parties wanting to hold their conferences in this temple town, particularly on the eve of the polls.
Kamal Haasan's strategy, industry watchers say, is a repeat of what Rajnikanth has used to launch his movies in the last 15 years.
On the eve of launching Basha, Rajnikanth called on Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam General Secretary Vaiko, citing a wedding in the latter's family as the reason. That was when the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam was in power, and Rajnikanth shared cold vibes with the main opposition, the AIADMK.
Before launching Baba recently, he called on DMK chief M Karunanidhi. It seemed ironical, given the spiritual orientation of Baba's script, and Karunanidhi's known reservation about religion and the occult.
Since his maiden home production Valli, where he made a guest appearance, Rajnikanth's movies have always drubbed the political establishment. To add to that, there were regular predictions of his imminent entry into politics.
Kamal Haasan's announcement has not evoked much of a reaction yet.
As a star, Kamal Haasan has displayed a social conscience. His fan associations have been organising blood donation camps across the state on his birthday (November 7) for over two decades. Recently, he signed up to donate his organs.