Kamal Haasan, the aging superstar of Tamil films has understood the truth that he has lost his old charm. As a new generation of movie makers and young stars have taken over the center stage of Tamil film industry, it is time for stars like Kamal Haasan (63) to move over and reboot their image from that of the eternal college student running after young girls to that of characters that match their age. But as on date, that segment in Tamil films have been taken over by veteran character artists and hence there is no vacancy. With most of the films acted by Rajnikanth and Kamal Haasan flopping in the box offices and actors like Ajit, Surya and Karthik commanding premium positions, the aged superstars are facing uncertainty.
Kamal Haasan did not leave Tamil Nadu. But he surrendered to the demands made by Islamists and deleted the scenes objected to by them. The actor has no consistency in his views.
George Bernard Shaw is reported to have said that politics is the last resort of scoundrels. In modern times, especially in Tamil Nadu, politics has turned out to be the last resort for senseless and selfish film actors who are thoroughly ignorant of the outside world. Both Rajnikanth (original name Shivaji Rao Gaekwad) and Kamal Haasan were surviving till now on other people’s money. They don’t know any work other than acting. Rajnikanth has completed matriculation and has a diploma in acting from Adyar Film Institute. Kamal Haasan is a school drop-out and does not know anything other than dancing and acting. But modern-day politics is not about cinema and dance.
Rajnikanth was the first to make his political dreams known to the outside world. He is reported to have said at the time of 1996 assembly election in Tamil Nadu that if the then chief minister Jayalalithaa was returned to power then even God would not be able to save the State and its people. There was a strong anti-incumbency factor against Jayalalithaa and her party the AIADMK were obliterated in the election. Jayalalithaa was defeated in the Bargur constituency. The Tamil Nadu media, which has not seen anything beyond cinema and drama described the 1996 verdict as an endorsement of Rajnikanth’s views!
In the 1998 general election, he again extended support to the DMK-TMC combine, but they won just eight seats. Similarly, in the 2004 parliamentary election, he said he would support the BJP, but the BJP and its ally, the AIADMK, did not bag a single seat despite Rajnikanth making it known that he would vote for the NDA.
Rajnikanth was in the news again during the run-up to the 2014 Lok Sabha election. Narendra Modi, the Prime Ministerial candidate of the BJP called on Rajnikanth at his Chennai residence where the latter was recuperating after a prolonged illness. But Rajnikanth was reluctant to make any political comments other than thanking Modi for his “get well soon” wishes.
He had tweeted many times in the recent past that he does not have anything to do with BJP or any other political party. Rajnikanth’s recent meetings with his fans across the State too gave an impression that he was testing the waters before taking a political plunge. It is not known what Rajnikanth has to offer the nation in the form of politics which the existing political outfits could offer. Had he been interested in politics, he would have joined it in 1996 itself instead of making sterile comments through social media.
The case of Kamal Haasan is no different. His recent outburst against Hindus calling them as terrorists is an attempt to mobilize the minority communities. The Hindus have said or done nothing against Kamal Haasan in spite of him taunting the community many times through his films, dialogues and from public platforms. Scholars of the community maintained silence over the shenanigans by the artist because of the latter being a school drop-out. “Kamal Haasan is parroting the script provided by his Communist comrades and the Dravidian politicians. Neither Kamal Haasan nor Rajnikanth would make any impact in politics as it is an entirely different cup of tea,” said Dr. Subramanian Swamy, MP and senior BJP leader.
The recent comment by Kamal Haasan that Hindus are extremists have a lot of similarities with the views of former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram. It was Chidambaram who coined the term “saffron terrorism” during his tenure as union home minister. G K Pillai, a former Home Secretary. had revealed that Chidambaram had tampered with the affidavits in the Ishrat Jahan encounter case though it was well prepared by professional investigators. When asked by the scribes whether he had tampered with the affidavits in the case Chidambaram denied of doing so and said that he had made only editorial changes in the copy given by the sleuths. Is Chidambaram an editor or a minister?
After he coined the tern Saffron terrorism, Chidambaram had not dared to contest an election. In the 2014 Lok Sabha election he “sacrificed” his one and only son Karti Chidambaram from Sivaganga constituency and the younger Chidambaram lost his deposit. Chidambaram entered Rajya Sabha from Maharashtra assembly since he knows well that Tamil Nadu has become a no-go area for his family.
Early 2014, in a function held to release a book authored by Chidambaram, Kamal Haasan said he preferred to see Chidambaram as the Prime Minister of India. Not a single Tamilian would aspire to see such a scenario in this country. Hence one can imagine the kind of political knowledge Kamal Haasan has. Fortunately, the family of D Srinivasa Iyengar has at least one or two persons with sensibilities. Chaaru Haasan, elder brother of Kamal Haasan told Thanthi TV in a recent interview that Kamal Haasan has no qualifications to be the chief minister of Tamil Nadu. “He is not fit for the job,” Charu Haasan told Rangaraj Pandey in the interview.
It was in January 2013 that Kamal Haasan, who accuses the Hindus as terrorists, told the world that he was thinking of leaving India and settling in a secular country. “Tamil Nadu is not the place for me. Someone in Tamil Nadu does not want me to live and work here,” said Kamal Haasan though he refused to reveal who was the person who does not like his presence in the State.
The declaration came in the aftermath of the stiff opposition by 23 Islamic outfits against his flick Viswaroopam. The Islamic outfits demanded the deletion of scenes portraying Muslims as terrorists and villains in the movie. Though the movie was cleared by the censor board, the Islamists were adamant that they would not allow the movie to be released in Tamil Nadu. Muthuvel Karunanidhi, the DMK president asked Kamal Haasan to sit with the representatives of Islamic outfits and resolve the issue amicably. What Haasan did was to plant reports in newspapers and channels indirectly blaming Jayalalithaa for the opposition shown by Islamist outfits. “It was Kamal Haasan’s comments that he wanted to see Chidambaram as Prime Minister which upset Jayalalithaa. She was waiting for a right moment to strike. Viswaroopam cane quite handy for her,” wrote K A Johny, senior reporter of Mathrubhumi, a leading Malayalam daily. This was repeated by many other newspapers too though Jayalalithaa scoffed at the allegations.
Kamal Haasan did not leave Tamil Nadu. But he surrendered to the demands made by Islamists and deleted the scenes objected to by them. The actor has no consistency in his views. In his recent article, he has eulogized Dravidians whom he describes as the original inhabitants of this part of India. Being a school drop out there is no chance of Kamal Haasan reading the scientific report that there never were any Dravidians or Aryans in India and the population in the sub-continent has same genetic traits and DNA structure. It was a scientific team led by Dr. Kumarasamy Thangaraj of the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology which made this discovery. Dr Thangaraj is from Tamil Nadu, the so-called Dravidian land as claimed by Kamal Hassam and his comrades.
What Tamil Nadu electorate is going to do with this cinema actor with a below average IQ and who is illiterate about the world in which we live is anybody’s guess. It is true that Tamil Nadu had accepted with both arms film personalities such as M Karunanidhi, M G Ramachandran and J Jayalalithaa. But it is the same Tamil Nadu which rejected the politics of Sivaji Ganesan. The situation prevailing in the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s were quite different from what we see today. The new generation of voters wants the best in the world. They know that other countries had progressed much faster than India only because they had politicians with devotion, discipline, and dedication. Both Kamal Haasan and Rajnikanth do not fit in the kind of things envisaged by the people of Tamil Nadu who are slowly understanding the ground realities.
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