February 11, 2021 10:09:20 pm
In a shot in the arm for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ahead of the Tamil Nadu Assembly elections, late screen legend and Rajya Sabha MP Sivaji Ganesan’s son Ramkumar and former Chennai mayor Karate R Thiagarajan joined the saffron party on Thursday.
They were ushered into the saffron fold in the presence of top state BJP leader L Murugan and party national secretary CT Ravi.
Under the banner of ‘Sivaji Productions’, Ramkumar has produced numerous Tamil films, including the blockbuster ‘Chandramukhi’ which starred superstar Rajinikanth. He has also acted in a couple of films. Ramkumar said he joined the BJP because of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“Sivaji Ganesan taught us to love the country and embrace spirituality. PM Narendra Modi is following the same ideology. We must work together to strengthen his hand. Our country will develop only if we support Modi as he is leading the country in the right direction. A lot of our supporters are joining the BJP in other districts as well. Lotus will bloom in Tamil Nadu,” Ramkumar said.
However, his decision to join the BJP invited a sharp rebuke from the Congress camp. Tamil Nadu Congress spokesperson K Chandrasekaran issued a statement on Wednesday, terming his move as an insult to his father’s fame.
“I am deeply disappointed. Sivaji Ganesan served the Congress for more than 30 years. He was a nationalist and a secular leader. Even after he left the Congress citing a difference of opinion, his respect for our great leader Kamaraj remained the same. Till his last breath, Sivaji was a disciple of Kamaraj and his son has joined a party which is in cahoots with a group that hatched a conspiracy to kill Kamaraj. His act will sully his father’s legacy,” Chandrasekaran said.
Thiagarajan, a former Congress leader, had been a strong and vocal advocate of Rajinikanth’s political plunge. He participated in many debates supporting the actor’s proposed political venture. After the superstar decided not to enter politics on the advice of doctors, Thiagarajan met BJP president Murugan, setting off murmurs of his imminent saffron switch.
He formally joined the BJP along with a raft of his followers at a grand function in Chennai on Thursday.
The BJP’s effort to woo popular Tamil faces, across diverse fields, into the saffron fold has been underway for the last couple of months. In December, last year, former India cricketer Laxman Sivaramakrishnan joined the BJP to bolster the party’s prospects in the Assembly polls.
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