December 13, 2020
The Covai Post in conversation with Umashankar N, a well-known supporter of Superstar Rajinikanth.
If you look at the process of voting in Tamil Nadu, the vote is for the leader. But Rajinikanth says government will be different from the leader. What do you have to say about this?
He wants clean politics. He wants to eliminate corruption to the core. Every bit of corruption should be eliminated. That is his idea. To eliminate corruption, it has to be top to bottom and from bottom to top. Lower-level officers take bribes. At the highest level, bribes run in crores and lakhs. He wants the party to supervise the government’s functioning. Those who come to power should not misuse office.
Do you think people will vote for Rajinikanth when he says he is not the chief ministerial candidate?
Entire India goes by leadership. We want to give power to those who will lead us to goals. We do look for leaders and I am sure Rajinikanth will change his views on this. I am sure Rajinikanth will take a call on this for the welfare of the people. This is our appeal to him on his birthday.
Is Rajinikanth coming to politics for the people of Tamil Nadu or for the people of India?
He had said earlier that he wouldn’t contest parliamentary elections and would take a call when the elections scenario inches closer. In 2019, he decided he wouldn’t contest. It is very clear his goal is not the national scenario. His goal is confined to the well-being of the state. He may scale it up at a later date.
After BJP came to power, Hindutva vote bank has become a popular phrase. Is Rajinikanth pinning his hopes on Hindutva bank vote?
I don’t know to what extent there is Hindutva vote in the entire country. In my opinion, people haven’t voted on the basis of religion in 2014 or 2019. India is a country where Hindus are a majority. In practical terms, I don’t think people vote simply on the basis of the religion. There is a perception that Hindutva vote bank has been created in the country. In Tamil Nadu, it doesn’t exist. It has not reflected at all in the previous elections. Even those who had vocally spoken against the Hindus have been voted to power.
DMK has been vocal against Hindu ideologists, but they haven’t been voted out. Tamil Nadu people are able to distinguish between religion and politics. I don’t know if they will ever mingle both. People don’t take lightly to Hindu faith being belittled.
Rajinikanth isn’t a person who will go for such things. He is for inclusiveness of religion.
What are your expectations from Annaatthe? They are saying it will be his last film…
I don’t know what is going to be the theme of Annaatthe. He has a habit of keeping things confidential. If the storyline goes out, interest in the movie may come down. Absolute confidentiality is maintained with regards to every movie. Sometimes, he has even taken two years for a movie. Late 70s, he has acted in 12 or 15 movies a year. Late 90s, it got reduced to one movie a year.
After announcing his political entry, he has done a few movies. Maybe for elections. He will be funding from his own pocket. He is a person who doesn’t take money from others.
If he wins in politics, he may not have time to act. That is the practical side of it. Annaatthe perhaps might be the last movie of his career.
This election doesn’t see the presence of Jayalalithaa or Karunanidhi. Will this be a Rajini-centric election or he would do another Vijayakanth and just split votes?
He will not split votes. He will shift votes from ADMK and DMK in his favour. People have been longing for an alternative. They haven’t found anyone. Now, there is a force – Rajinikanth. He is transparent and people like him. Both DMK and ADMK have anti-incumbency factors and this stands in favour for Rajinikanth. He can win 200 seats.