Updated: February 22, 2016 3:08:41 am
In the run-up to the Tami Nadu Assembly elections, Sarathkumar, the actor-turned-politician and leader of the Samathuva Makkal Katchi, walked out of the AIADMK alliance Sunday.
“I promised that I will be in the alliance, I have completed five years now and fulfilled my word. I do not want to blame AIADMK, but when I look back I feel that we could have done much more than what we did,” he told The Indian Express.
Sarathkumar, however, lost one MLA while leaving the alliance.
“Including myself, we had two MLAs. But one MLA, Ernavur Narayanan, has been expelled from the party earlier,” he said. Narayanan was expelled after he opposed the decision to leave the alliance with AIADMK last month.
Sarathkumar, who once had a hold over the powerful Nadar community votes in the state’s southern districts, had entered politics with the help of K P Kandasamy, a former DMK minister and founder of Dinakaran. His powerful community also helped Sarathkumar’s swift rise in politics. The actor was even elected on a DMK ticket to the Rajya Sabha from Tamil Nadu in 2001. His wife Radhika, daughter of late actor M R Radha, is also known to have close links with the DMK.
In 2006, Sarathkumar quit DMK to join the AIADMK, a move that did not last long. He formed the All India Samathuva Makkal Katchi in 2007.
On Sunday, he refused to comment on his experience with AIADMK. However, he said his party had already finalised an election manifesto and will announce the alliance decisions soon. “The youth are my strength,” the 61-year-old said. “There is a vacuum in state politics. People are tired of both Dravidian parties — they are expecting new faces, a new leader. I will work for them.”
Asked whether it was the lack of AIADMK support during the Nadigar Sangam controversy and his embarrassing defeat in the film association’s election that led to his exit, he said: “That was a trivial issue. Nadigar Sangam issues have nothing to do with politics.”
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