20 April, 2021

Test For Thalaivar Magick

Rajinikanth’s late entry has unnerved Dravidian majors

Photograph by PTI
Test For Thalaivar Magick

Thalaivaaa...  ” that full-throated, exultant cry of fans was synonymous with Rajinikanth’s first appearance in a particular film. Finally, that welcome for the ‘leader’ can now be extended to the political platform. For his numerous fans and Tamil Nadu’s voters, Rajinikanth has raised expectations with the promise of a political plunge for long. Now, his promised arrival on January 1 has introduced a third dimension into the state’s bipolar politics.  

Both the ruling AIADMK, in power for a decade, and a DMK desperate to win, were gunning for a direct fight in the April 2021 elections. Rajini’s arrival has suddenly introduced an unknown factor. The pandemic had given second thoughts to Rajinikanth, a kidney transplant patient, comforting the two Dravidian majors. Till Rajini decided to risk it all—fame, political capital and his own health.

“Neither Palaniswami nor Stalin would be able to match Rajinikanth’s charisma and the heat he is bound to generate. The electoral calculations these two...

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