Want to be seen as possible CM candidate: Sarathkumar

Actor-turned-politician says it’s unfair to identify him and his party AISMK with a single community

Updated - November 16, 2017 09:34 am IST

Published - November 16, 2017 12:55 am IST - CHENNAI

Sarathkumar. File

Sarathkumar. File

After being closely aligned with the AIADMK, All India Samathuva Makkal Katchi (AISMK) leader and actor R. Sarathkumar now wants to ensure the growth of his party.

“For the last 10 years, I have been closely associated with AIADMK. In fact, I have even been identified as the party’s propaganda secretary. Though I don’t regret this identification, my party couldn’t grow. Now, I want to focus on my party and be seen as a possible Chief Minister candidate,” said Mr. Sarathkumar on Tuesday.

He contended that it was unfair that he and his party should be associated with a single community. “Just because I was born in a certain community doesn’t mean that I will favour only my community. People should think beyond caste and see me as a just leader,” he told The Hindu .

As for statements by leaders like PMK founder S. Ramadoss that film stars shouldn’t enter politics, he said, “I wouldn’t say that they shouldn’t enter politics. But it shouldn’t just be because of the glamour and the position they enjoy in society. They can’t say that about MGR and Jayalalithaa. They both had worked extensively in politics and were in the thick of things. I have been in active politics for 21 years.”

On Rajini and Kamal

Criticising the ‘belated’ attempts of actors Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan to foray into politics, he asked, “Why didn’t you (they) come in 1996? Even if you weren’t involved in politics, you should have at least opposed the government when needed. Rajinikanth opposed her (Jayalalithaa) and went to the US. Did Kamal oppose the government vehemently during (the) Vishwaroopam (controversy)? If they were righteous, they should have opposed them then. Just because there is a vacuum, they are trying to fill it.”

He felt the Dravidian parties should move on from their anti-Hindi/anti-Brahmin stance and focus on development of the State.

“The party in power is split and that has given the BJP a chance. Also, senior BJP leaders in North India are also crossing all limits of speech and this has put fear into the minds of minorities. If people are living in fear, it is not democracy anymore.”

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