Karnataka leaders welcome actor Rajinikanth’s political debut

However, most believe it will not impact Karnataka politics

Published - December 31, 2017 11:24 pm IST - Bengaluru

Political fraternity in the State welcomed actor Rajinikanth’s decision to enter politics though most believe it will not have an impact on Karnataka politics, especially with the State going to polls in May.

While Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, in his cryptic response, said “great personalities entering politics is a good thing”, KPCC working president Dinesh Gundu Rao said “Rajinikanth’s entry was expected, but it will not make an impact on Karnataka”. Referring to the entry of film stars, including M.G. Ramachandran and J. Jayalalithaa through established Dravidian parties, Mr. Gundu Rao said: “It is difficult to achieve success by launching a new political outfit. However, one must wait and watch his future steps.”

Likening Mr. Rajinikanth to M.G.R., JD(S) leader A.H. Vishwanath said: “Mr. Rajinikanth met the long-time wish of people, especially his fans. Besides being a great actor, he is a good human being. He announced his entry into politics at the right time, when both Dravidian parties have lost credibility in Tamil Nadu. His entry is likely to make some impact on Karnataka politics.”

Though BJP leaders were guarded in their reaction, they said Mr. Rajinikanth should join hands with the party. Union Minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda said: “Mr. Rajinikanth acknowledged the political stands of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He wanted to become part of the country’s democratic system. We wish him all the best.”

State BJP general secretary Shobha Karandlaje said “it is better for Mr. Rajinikanth to join hands with the BJP in the country’s interest.” “The actor is set to fill the vacuum created owing to the demise of Jayalalithaa,” said Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Assembly Jagadish Shettar.

BJP MP Pralhad Joshi said “the actor’s debut will not impact national politics, as he is popular in Tamil Nadu”.

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