“I’m not going to contest in Lok Sabha elections”: says Rajinikanth

The actor turned politician Superstar Rajni in a statement issued on Sunday, said that his photo or party symbol should not be used for any propaganda. He announced that neither he nor his yet-to-be-formed party will contest the upcoming general elections.

“I am not going to contest in Lok Sabha elections. Our target is assembly elections. My support is not for any party. Hence no party should use my photo or my outfit’s logo in campaign. My party hasn’t supported any other party in the upcoming parliamentary elections. Therefore, no one should use my photo, or no flags of Rajini Makkal Mandram and Rajini Fan Club should be used to support any campaign or any party,” he said.

He had assured his followers that his politics will be “spiritual” and that it will be based on “honesty and truthfulness.

Identifying water crisis as the biggest problem facing Tamil Nadu, Rajinikanth urged voters to choose the party which comes up with the best policy to solve the water crisis permanently.

The 765-km long Cauvery river, also called the “Ganga of the south”, is the lifeline for Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The distribution of water between the southern neighbours has been a contentious issue for decades.

His proximity to Prime Minister Narendra Modi cannot be ignored, especially after Narendra Modi met him at his residence ahead of the 2014 General Elections whereas Rajini did not commit to vote for any of the party.

With this statement on the Tamil Nadu’s water concerns, analysts say that Rajinikanth is indirectly pressing his followers to vote for BJP. Rajinikanth had spoken in favour of linking rivers in the early 2000s. He had also observed a hunger strike and came forward to give Rs 1 crore for the river linking scheme.

“BJP’s Nitin Gadkari has been speaking about the Godavari and Cauvery linkage. The Congress has not spoken anything about the river linkage projects. So, it is clear that Rajini wants his supporters to vote for BJP,” said Selvaraj Sankaraiah,

To a large extent, seasoned political observers believe that Rajinikanth’s decision to join politics has a link with the BJP. “So far, Rajinikanth’s statements are unclear. Unless he launches his political party and issues a manifesto, I cannot comment properly. As of now, Rajinikanth’s decision is nothing but a film in the making. Once the film is released, then I can clearly opine on it,” said senior journalist Gnani Shankaran.

Sunidhi Bhatti

Sunidhi Bhatti is a Post graduate in Mass Communications and Electronic Media. She is a young enthusiast who loves to write on political affairs and always satisfied with her work. Besides a content writer, she is a vocalist also.

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