Short of announcing his political party, superstar Rajinikanth on Monday invoked the legacy of late All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam founder M G Ramachandran, saying he was confident of giving a good administration like the yesteryear matinee idol.
Ramachandran, popularly known as MGR, is often referred to as the benchmark of success in politics, especially for an actor, with many other cinema professionals trying to emulate him by taking the political plunge in Tamil Nadu.
"Nobody can match MGR even in 1,000 years and that includes me," he said referring to criticism, especially from the ruling AIADMK, that not all can emulate Ramachandran's success in politics.
In his speech, which gave an insight into his political ideology and his priorities of his yet-to-be launched party, Rajinikanth acknowledged he was 'not MGR' and 'if someone says he will be (like) MGR, he will only be a crazy man'.
"But I am confident that I can give a rule like him, that will benefit the poor and the common man," he said amidst loud cheers from the gathering at the ACS Medical College and Hospital, where he unveiled a statue of MGR.
However, in view of the current 'political vacuum' I am confident I will be able to give a 'good' administration and 'spiritual' governance', he said.
In his first political remarks since December 31 last when he announced he will enter politics, Rajinikanth, who has a large fan following, said there was a 'vacuum for a good leader' in the state politics currently.
This was following the demise of late Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa and ill-health of 93-year old Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam president M Karunanidhi who has become inactive politically of late, he said.
The road leading to the function venue was dotted with banners and posters hailing and welcoming the actor.
Rajinikanth gave away awards to some students on the occasion.
His event today comes days after contemporary Kamal Haasan launched his political party Makkal Needhi Maiam.
IMAGE: Superstar Rajinikanth greets his fans after unveiling a statue of former chief minister M G Ramachandran at the Dr MGR Educational and Research Institute in Chennai on Monday. Photograph: PTI Photo