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Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Rajini says ‘leaked’ letter on his political exit is fake

Rajini, however, tweeted: “A letter appearing to be my statement is being shared virally on social media and in the press. Everyone knows that it is not my statement.”

Written by Arun Janardhanan | Chennai | Updated: October 30, 2020 1:35:36 am
In 2017, Rajinikanth announced that he will float a party and contest in all the 234 constituencies in the assembly election. (Photo: IFFI 2019/Twitter)

After a letter purportedly written by Rajinikanth hinting at his political exit was “leaked” to the media, the actor Thursday dismissed it as fake, but added that its contents on his health, which puts him at increased risk from Covid-19, was accurate.

The letter was addressed to senior leaders of the actor’s fan association—expected to form the backbone of his long-delayed political party. It talks about the actor’s concern over his health if he launches campaigns amid a pandemic ahead of the May 2021 state elections.

“If I am going to make the announcement, I have to do it in December itself. I leave it to my fans and the people to take a call about what I should do considering the prevailing situation,” says the letter.

Rajini, however, tweeted: “A letter appearing to be my statement is being shared virally on social media and in the press. Everyone knows that it is not my statement.”

“However, some references made in the letter about my health and my doctor’s advice to me were true. I will make an announcement regarding my political stand to the people regarding this at the right time after due consultation with members of Rajini Makkal Mandram,” he wrote.

Multiple sources in the fan association were convinced that the letter was genuine. They claimed it was leaked by one of them, and that the top leadership of the fan group was almost certain that Rajini is unlikely to launch the party.

Sources close to the superstar said his health will not permit him to run campaigns during a pandemic, considering that he underwent a kidney transplant abroad in 2016.

Meanwhile, his fans aren’t holding their breath. Asked about Rajini’s possible political entry in December 2020, a top fan association leader from Chennai said that the word “curious” would be more appropriate than “thrilled” this time. “We used to get thrilled earlier each time when there were rumours about his political entry. That has gone… We are curious to know about his decision now. If Covid-19 is the reason for cancelling his plans this time, we understand that,” he said.

Another fan association leader said the actor had also considered launching the party online and carrying out digital campaigns. “But then there were many opinions discouraging the idea as it wouldn’t make an impact. He cannot run a party and contest in general elections using social media sites. The idea of organising huge public rallies and addressing them virtually also was ruled out,” the leader said.

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