Rajinikanth, Kamal Haasan share stage at Sivaji Ganesan's memorial, fuel speculation on political plunge

Tamil film icons Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan fuelled rumours of their entry in politics after sharing the dais at the inauguration of actor Sivaji Ganesan's memorial in Chennai on Sunday. While the two superstars dropped hints galore, they desisted from making any definite statement on entering politics.

This is the first time that the two actors shared a stage with members of the state Cabinet after Haasan attacked the ruling AIADMK on issues such as corruption and the spread of dengue.

The function was also attended by fisheries minister D Jayakumar, information and publicity minister Kadambur Raju and senior members of South Indian Artistes Association.

On being asked about his supposed transformation from an actor to politician, Rajinikanth said that only stardom was not enough for political success.

Rajinikanth added that Haasan wanted him to enter politics, India Today reported.  Last month, Haasan had said that he would join Rajinikanth if he were to enter politics.  "Rajini and I have been discussing professional matters. If he joins politics, it won't be difficult for us to discuss politics. I will join him provided he enters politics. We have been rivals on the professional front, but we always consult over key issues," Haasan said on Friday, while addressing questions on video by a leading Tamil daily.

File images of Rajnikanth (L) and Kamal Haasan (R)

File images of Rajinikanth (L) and Kamal Haasan (R)

Previously, Rajinikanth had brushed off the issue by saying that the decision to join politics would happen at the right time. However, meetings with political party leaders and opinions on contentious issues by the leaders had set the rumour mill churning. Rajinikanth's meeting with a delegation of farmers and the Hindu Makkal Katchi in Chennai  in June was seen as a step forward for his political ambitions. At the meeting, he promised to take up the issue of interlinking of rivers with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He also pledged Rs one crore for the cause. In September, Kamal Haasan met AAP supremo and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal at the former's Chennai residence where they publicly condemned communal forces. After the meeting, Haasan  has said that the meeting with Kejriwal had added to his learning curve. On other occasions, Hassan has been more vocal about his interest in politics. At a wedding reception in Coimbatore in August, he said, “This is not a wedding ceremony but inaugural function of our political journey. We allowed looters into the corridors of power after being bribed for votes. You have made a big mistake, now we should correct it as it’s our duty to cleanse this state of corruption and bad governance.” Later, when asked by the media if he had mustered the courage to get into a leadership role, he replied, "My reply is, are you courageous enough to accept my leadership?" With inputs from agencies

Updated Date: Oct 01, 2017 14:11 PM

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