Actor and politician Kamal Haasan reiterated on Tuesday that he will join hands with his contemporary Rajinikanth, if it benefits the people Tamil Nadu. “If our ideologies match and if it helps the people of Tamil Nadu, we will shed our ego and co-operate. I’ve said this before,” Haasan told the media in Thoothukudi district for the upcoming 2021 elections in the state.
Haasan launched Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM) in 2018 from Madurai and kicked-off the first phase of his four-day election campaign on Sunday from the same district. There is wide anticipation if Haasan and Rajinikanth, the former co-stars in Tamil cinema with a huge cult following, will also partner politically as Rajinikanth was also planning to launch his party in January. The party is likely to contest all the 234 assembly seats in Tamil Nadu. “We both have said that we need a change in Tamil Nadu,” Haasan said. “But we can’t consider one-liners. So let their (Rajinikanth’s party) ideology and policies be clear and then we’ll talk. We are just a phone call away.”
MNM fought the 2019 Lok Sabha polls but couldn’t win a seat but registered a 3.7% vote share. Haasan will be making his poll debut in the assembly elections next year, but he is yet to announce his constituency.
The fledgling parties of Rajinikanth and Kamal will be fighting Dravidian rivals who have formed successive governments in the state — the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and their national partners Congress and Bharatiya Janata party, respectively.
Haasan also drew on matinee idol MG Ramachandran (MGR) who broke away from the DMK to form the ADMK, later renamed as AIADMK. “For those who haven’t even seen MGR’s face, I grew up on MGR’s lap,” Haasan tweeted with a video of MGR kissing him on his forehead. “MGR belongs to the people. We cannot call him a DMK or an AIADMK man.”