A week ago, Rajinikanth had hinted at entering politics and asked his fans to "be ready for war". On Monday, after members of Tamilar Munnetra Padai, a fringe political outfit, led by its leader Veeralakshmi burned effigies of the actor near his Chennai residence, the superstar's fans staged a protest at the Periyar bus terminal in Madurai. They set an effigy of Veeralakshmi ablaze and said it should serve as a warning.
In Chennai, security outside Rajinikanth's Poes Garden residence was tightened, after Veeralakshmi and her workers staged a protest one km away, against his decision to take the political plunge.
While there is speculation that Rajinikanth may join the BJP, and help the party take off in Tamil Nadu, a source close to the actor on Friday denied that he will join the saffron party if he decides to enter the political arena, and said the filmstar has “clear directions from Delhi”.
Stating that the actor is preparing the ground to start a new organisation and he “has political plans”, the source said, “He has not told us whether it would be a political party or a political organisation.”
In the wake of a series of unsettling developments in the AIADMK-Amma camp, the mood is one of reconciliation with several MLAs mooting a patch-up with the group led by O Panneerselvam. In what could be a sign of warming up after a bitter struggle to lay their claim on party and symbol, OPS on Monday expressed confidence that Sasikala faction leaders would approach him for merger talks.
Hours later, Lok Sabha deputy speaker M Thambidurai welcomed Panneerselvam's call. "If he (OPS) comes forward, we will work in unison," he told reporters at the secretariat, after holding a couple of sessions with chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami at the latter's chamber, in an interval of two hours.