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Actor Vijayakumar returns to AIADMK

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BACK IN THE FOLD: Actor Vijayakumar receives a party membership card from Chief Minister and AIADMK general secretary Jayalalithaa on Tuesday.
BACK IN THE FOLD: Actor Vijayakumar receives a party membership card from Chief Minister and AIADMK general secretary Jayalalithaa on Tuesday.

S. Dorairaj

CHENNAI: Vijayakumar, who has excelled in many roles on the screen including a loving husband, affectionate father, majestic village head, honest police officer and passionate freedom fighter, is all set to play a new role in real life.

The actor, who heads a family of film artists including wife Manjula, daughters Preetha, Sridevi and Vanitha and son Arunkumar, formally joined the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) as one of its primary members on Tuesday.

He called on AIADMK general secretary and Chief Minister Jayalalithaa at her residence and received the membership card from her after completing the formalities.

Early ties

But, his association with the AIADMK dates back to the era of the late MGR. At one stage, he was in the forefront of many rallies organised by the party in Chennai.

Crowds cheered him as he showed the victory sign to the party workers and waved the party flag. When MGR appealed to his followers to tattoo the party flag on their arms, he was among those loyalists who faithfully fulfilled the leader's wish. Just as Vijayakumar was emerging as a crowd-puller in the party, and AIADMK men started setting up fan associations for him, his political career came to an abrupt end. After falling from the party leader's grace, he kept a low profile for several years.

Close on the heels of comedian Senthil, joining the AIADMK, Vijayakumar's re-entry into the party, and that when the elections are only a couple of months away, only shows the ruling party's keenness to use him for the election campaign in a State where politics and cinema are inseparably intertwined. With the AIADMK and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam lining up film personalities to spearhead the campaign, even as two other film stars Vijayakanth and Karthik lead political outfits, it goes without saying that the ensuing Assembly polls is going to be a star-studded affair.

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