Movie stars and sports persons have performed their way into the hearts of people while their stint as politicians has also not gone unnoticed.
More recently actors, singers, and sports persons taking a plunge into electoral politics are a common sight. The trend started in 1952 with actors Paidi Lakshmayya and Harindranath Chattopadhyay making it to the first Lok Sabha. In hindsight, the move has played out well for the majority of stars jumping into the political bandwagon. Their exploits on the silver screen and sports grounds kept us spell-bound and their celluloid charm often translated to votes and power.
As per ETV Bharat, the North has its share of actors-turned-politicians, but the trend has been way more profound in the South. For decades, the political landscape of Tamil Nadu was dominated by M K Karunanidhi, Jayalalithaa, and MG Ramachandran, the three movie icons with a lasting political legacy. With Rajnikanth, Kamal Hasan and other big names in the regional cinema making a foray into electoral politics, the trend is just gaining traction.
ETV Bharat tries to decoden as to why stars find comfort in politics
Cash in their popularity: Whether a star makes a good politician or not is debatable, but their popularity is undeniable. Stars come with a dedicated fan following rivaling that of even the seasoned politicians. Electoral politics provides them with a way to showcase and quantify it. Their rallies are jam-packed, and the media coverage they receive is simply unprecedented. Whether they hit the right chords or court controversies, they are a staple across mainstream media, including ETV News Channel.
Red carpet welcome from political parties: As ETV Mumbai report indicates, stars receive a red carpet welcome from political parties for the number of votes they have the potential to bring in. Every political party requires generating public loyalty in large numbers and alter poll outcomes generically. Stars are more palatable to the general public and hence, guarantee tremendous crowds each time they make an appearance. It’s the blend of star power and political clout that delivers electoral success.
A Viable Career Option: Barring a few exceptions, stars find refuge in politics once their celluloid or sporting career is over. According to ETV Marathi News, Urmila Matondkar, Gautama Gambhir, and Sunny Deol are some of the new entrants to the political bandwagon were looking for another career option to stay relevant. Politics helps them stay in the limelight post their stint on the silver screen and sports arenas. Politics is a tailor-made arrangement for them, offering the best of both worlds. Political parties acknowledge Their ability as crowd-pullers through tickets and plump postings.
It’s about social responsibility: Life has been kind to stars. Some of them have created success stories against all the odds. They know they have the power and the charisma to provide help where it is needed the most. By joining a political party and joining the government, they want to work for causes they hold dear.
Larger than life persona: ETV Live analysis reveals that star’s larger than life persona often translates to success with the ballot. Unlike mainstream politicians, stars neither need to provide a realistic alternative to issues nor align with a serious political ideology – their charm can carry them through. However, most of them are interested in helping, and a political career is an excellent start in that direction.