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WILL VISHAL DO A VIJAYAKANTH?

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Vishal to contest in RK Nagar by-poll election as an Independent Candidate

Ever since former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa's demise, there has never been a dull moment in the state's political scenario. Do a playback, and you get, OPS' rebellion against Sasikala, the 'Jallikattu' protests (significant considering such a protest of mass nature might not have happened under Jaya's autocratic rule), Sasikala's arrest, EPS-OPS falling out and the subsequent patch up.

 

Add to this, the heady mix of Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan announcing their foray into the political scene and now the latest entrant to rock the already unsteady ship is actor Vishal, who is expected to file nomination as an independent candidate for the upcoming RK Nagar elections on Monday (December 4' 2017). Frankly, RK Nagar that is usually in the eye of the storm only on a rare occasion has never looked this interesting and has been a point of many a discussion and debate.

 

To give the devil its due, Vishal has snatched victories not once but twice in the past – the bitterly fought Nadigar Sangam elections and later taking over the reins of the Tamil Nadu Film Producer's Council. Impressive for a young actor indeed. It is a bold move on the young actor's part considering that Rajinikanth has been dilly-dallying about his political entry for long and Kamal Haasan has only just recently been more vocal about it.

 

Vishal's decision doesn't come off as a surprise considering that it wasn't long ago that his office was subjected to an income tax raid, that too right after he spoke against the BJP for their tirade against GST and Digital India related dialogues in the Diwali blockbuster Mersal.  The timing certainly set tongues wagging. From the actor's point of view, a foot in the political arena could only be an added advantage for him to flag issues concerning the film industry like Entertainment tax, regularising cable TV and GST for instance besides his reported desire to serve the people.

 

To say that Vishal is up against a colossal is a serious understatement. For one, political elections are a different ball game altogether compared to the elections fought inside the ambit of a film industry. The 'Puratchi Thalapathy', that he is more often referred to, might be high on promises but has shown signs to deliver on all of them while juggling his acting career. Not to forget that just in the case of Rajinikanth, the 'outsider' tag might come to haunt him. A case in point would be when the opponents repeatedly harped on his 'Reddy' surname during the Nadigar Sangam election episode. 'Arjun Reddy' might have broken the shackles, but this Reddy surely has a long way to go. Vishal's ambitious plans have also earned him the ire of a few industry veterans and industry body FEFSI, to name a few for his bold moves.

 

While on one side, you do have success stories of MGR and Jayalalithaa, turning their fans' adulation into victories on the political arena, you also have sob stories like that of Sivaji Ganesan, who came a cropper. Even if Vishal doesn't get to score a hat-trick, his potency to split the vote bank at least, just like the DMDK chief Vijayakanth did in the 2011 state elections, can't be ignored.

 

Vishal emerging victorious in RK Nagar elections will be a miracle indeed, and miracles aren't unheard of. As for ones like you and me, watching all this unfold with a strict face of impassiveness, it makes up for some good entertainment at least if not anything else. Like Vidya Balan says in The Dirty Picture, its all about 'Entertainment. Entertainment. Entertainment' and the line between reel and real, does blur at times.


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