Security has been beefed up outside superstar Rajinikanthâ€™s Poes Garden residence in Chennai. This after a small political outit Tamilar Munnetra Padai led by its leader Veeralakshmi took to the streets of Chennai on Monday protesting against Rajini's speech hinting at entering politics in Tamil Nadu.
Security increased at Rajinikanth's house as Tamilar Munnetra Padai protests on hints of him joining politics,say Kannadiga shouldnt rule TN pic.twitter.com/ZXfi7Cs1fmâ€” ANI (@ANI_news) May 22, 2017
Visuals from the protest on Monday show the group of around 50 people, waving flags and burning effigies of Rajinikanth on Cathedral Road, about a kilometre from Rajinikanth's residence. Chanting slogans calling him a Kannadiga and not a Tamizhan, Tamilar Munnetra Padai protested stating that Rajini should keep away from politics.
â€śThamizhachi Thamizarukey, Kannadiga nadigar Rajinikanth oziga,â€ť chanted protesters (A Tamil should rule Tamils, Kannadiga actor Rajinikanth down down).
Later, four people from the fringe outfit were arrested by the Chennai police under IPC sections 143 (unlawful assembly), 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant), 183 (resistance to the taking of property by the lawful authority of a public servant), and 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions). Those arrested include TMP's General Secretary Ganesh, Ranjith and two others.
The actor had on Friday reiterated his Tamil identity, calling himself a â€śPachchai Tamizhanâ€ť observing that he had spent 22 years in Karnataka, but had spent 44 years in Tamil Nadu. Addressing his fans Rajinikanth had stated, â€śYou all gave me love, respect and fame. You made me a Tamizhan. I am a pachchai Tamizhan.â€ť
Another outfit Thanthai Periyar Dravidar Kazhagam had on Saturday burnt effigies of the superstar in Coimbatore over his recent speech.
Tamil Nadu: Tamilar Munnetra Padai protests near the residence of Rajinikanth in Chennai pic.twitter.com/1MlbNittJEâ€” ANI (@ANI_news) May 22, 2017
His speech last week was the biggest hint in over two decades that he could join politics. Calling the political system corrupt, he urged his supporters to â€śprepare for warâ€ť when the time comes.
Meanwhile, speculation mounts over Rajinikanthâ€™s next steps â€“ would he float his own party or join a national party like the BJP. The saffron party has welcomed the superstar with open arms, with BJP National President Amit Shah stating that its doors were open for Rajini.
Not just Tamilar Munnetra Padai, but other outfits like Tamizhaga Vazhvurimai Katchi (TVK) too are against Rajinikanth's 'sudden entry' into politics. TVK leader and former PMK strongman T Velmurugan told TNM, "Rajinikanth is someone who has never made his ideologies clear. He has never spoken out on what he thinks of many issues that plague and affect Tamilians. Let him tell us where he stands on issues of the common people, only then can he enter politics. He can't simply jettison into politics."
Earlier this year, Rajini faced protests from outfits such as the VCK, MDMK and TVK over his decision to go to Jaffna as part of production house Lyca group's event to inaugurate houses for those who had been displaced in the civil war in Sri Lanka. He was, however, forced to cancel his plans after the protests.