Chennai: What did actor Rajinikanth gain by stepping out of his house to tell the media that he would not take back his words, uttered at the golden jubilee celebration of Thuglak magazine on January 14? His digging in his heels is only as intriguing as to why he said those (now controversial) words on Periyar and also the Murasoli newspaper in the first place, seven days earlier.
If one were to ask what else should he be expected to speak at a Thuglak event, the answer is: Yes, you may have a point. But Rajinikant need not have used that platform to denigrate what he might otherwise abhor, the DMK and Periyar, just to present a rosy picture of Thuglak to the people of Tamil Nadu. For the Tamil people know more about Thuglak, Murasoli and Periyar than him, which Rajini should be aware of.
Yet if he did that the only reason could be that he has been sucked into the whirl of the modern day political discourse, in which it is sought to be expounded that the state has to discard its history, present ideologies and leanings and start afresh with new faces. To put it more succinctly, the fashionable belief is that the state has gone to the dogs because of the Dravidian movement and it has to be redeemed from further decline by subscribing to alternative ideologies and political beliefs and picking new leaders. So, Rajinikanth, who has not hidden his political ambitions of late, feels that he can fill in the gap. But to clear the ground for him he may to do away with the lingering legacy of Periyar and the Dravidian movement.
But as someone who is not well versed in Tamil Nadu history and politics, he takes inputs from others and naturally slips up on some facts like the alleged nude pictures of Ram and Sita.
Yet one cannot blame him for the faux pas at all. In 1971 he was not in Tamil Nadu — his first film came out only in 1975 — and he might not have read Murasoli even once.
But he now knows that by clubbing Murasoli and Periyar together and indirectly urging the people to dump them alone can pave the way for his political ingress in Tamil Nadu.