Chennai: The BJP has responded with expected disdain to the media seeking views on Rajinikanth’s shun-saffron averments on Friday. There are now attempts to saffronise him just the way they tried with the great saint-philosopher Thiruvalluvar; but, neither would get trapped in saffron, the superstar had declared at the press conference outside his Poes Garden bungalow.
Asked to comment on that, former Union Minister and BJP senior leader Pon Radhakrishnan said his party had never tried to saffronise the superstar nor did they woo him to join the BJP. He had met Rajinikanth on Nov 6 only to congratulate him on being presented with the IFFI ‘Special Icon of Golden Jubilee Award’, Ponnar told reporters at Chennai.
He had just on October 22 appealed to the superstar at a public meeting in Pudukkotai to join the BJP. Speaking to the media later, he had said, “I wholeheartedly welcome him into the BJP-fold. He is knowledgeable with a keenness for being bold and honest. Moreover, he remains a superstar and I would be very glad if his embraces the BJP.”
BJP national general secretary Muralidhar Rao too said his party had “never said Rajini had joined BJP or will join it. “I do not want to add to all this speculation. Our party is just not interested in carrying forward this speculation”, he told reporters at Chennai.
As for the controversy arising out BJP’s alleged attempts to saffronise Thiruvalluvar, Rao said it was indeed true that the great sage-philosopher was a Hindu and certainly not an atheist. The BJP “is in the process of collecting documents to prove that Thiruvalluvar was not an atheist”.
There was anger in the rival political camps, the DMK and the Congress, on Rajini’s averment that there is vacuum in good leadership in Tamil Nadu (after the death of Jayalalithaa and Karunanidhi). DMK treasurer S Duraimurugan said the vacuum had been filled already by DMK president M K Stalin and everyone knew that. “He (Rajini) has been talking for long about launching his party. Let him first get into politics and then he will know if there is still any vacuum”, Duraimurugan told reporters.