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Sunday, April 11, 2021

Mithun joins BJP, PM calls him ‘Banglar Chhele’

A former Naxalite, the actor's political career has over the years seen all hues: from his proximity with the Left to left of the centre to now right of the centre.

Written by Santanu Chowdhury | Kolkata |
March 8, 2021 2:09:47 am
Kolkata news, Bengal news, Mithun Chakraborty BJP, Mithun Chakraborty joins BJP, Bengal BJP, PM rally Bengal, Narendra Modi Bengal rallyMithun Chakraborty with Modi at the Brigade Parade Ground rally (top) in Kolkata on Sunday. (Express photo by Partha Paul)

Calling himself a “cobra who can kill with one bite”, actor and former TMC Rajya Sabha MP Mithun Chakraborty on Sunday joined the BJP to “serve the poor” and regretted his stint with his former party.

Addressing BJP workers at the Brigade Parade Ground in Kolkata with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other party leaders in attendance, he described himself a “pure cobra” and coined a new slogan for the party.

“Earlier my slogan used to be ‘marbo ekhane, lash porbe shoshane’ (I will beat you here, your body will land in a crematorium). This slogan has become old now. I have prepared a new slogan for the campaign in this election. It is ‘aami joldhora noi, belebora noi, aami jaat gokhro, ek chobolei chobi (I am not an ordinary snake. I am the Indian cobra. One bite can kill you),” he said.

Earlier, West Bengal BJP president Dilip Ghosh inducted him into the party by handing him a party flag. Later, Modi during his addess referred to Chakraborty as “Banglar Chhele” (Bengal’s own).

The National Award-winning actor said he had always dreamt of working for the poor and underprivileged, and the BJP had given him a platform to fulfil this. “You can call me selfish or anything. But the reason behind my selfishness is that I want to work for poor people. I want to fight for them,” he said.

A former Naxalite, the actor’s political career has over the years seen all hues: from his proximity with the Left to left of the centre to now right of the centre.

He was once considered close to late CPM transport and sports minister Subhas Chakrabarty during the Left Front regime. Later, he switched to the TMC and became its Rajya Sabha MP in 2014. However, he had quit the Upper House in 2016 citing health reasons after his name surfaced in the Saradha Ponzi scam.

“Since I was 18 years old, I had a dream that I will work for the poor people, I will help them, I will get them their due respect. I left (as Rajya Sabha MP). Today, I don’t want to point fingers at anyone that it was their fault or anyone else’s. It was my bad decision. Let’s end that topic here,” Chakraborty said.

A BJP source said the septuagenarian would start campaigning for the party from March 12.

Chakraborty met RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat over breakfast at his Mumbai residence last month,setting off speculation that he might join the BJP.

Chakraborty rose to stardom with his role as a tribal archer in Mrinal Sen’s film ‘Mrigayaa’ in 1976 for which he won the National Film Award for best actor. He became a popular name in Bollywood and in foreign film markets like the former Soviet Union in the 1980s when he starred in a string of action movies, family dramas and musicals.

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