Vishal jumps into R.K. Nagar fray


Actor Vishal has announced that he will be contesting in the R.K. Nagar bypoll scheduled for December 21. Speaking to The Hindu, actor Vishal said that he would state his reasons in detail after filing his nomination papers, but clarified that he would be contesting as an independent candidate.

He is expected to file his nomination on Monday, the last date.

Suggesting that the voice of people living in R.K. Nagar constituency, which was represented by former Chief Minister Jayalalithaa, has not been properly heard, he said, “I want their voice to be heard quickly and their problems solved. The people’s demands and concerns must be heard much more effectively. I don’t want any political gain out of this. As a common man myself, I want to ensure that people get what they want.”

After Mr Vishal won the much-hyped Nadigar Sangam elections in 2015 and became the president of the Tamil Film Producers Council in 2017, his entry into politics was in a way expected as he started taking on politicians boldly.

Asked if his new political avatar will make matters worse for the film industry since he has been at the forefront, pushing for reforms – be it within the film industry or forcefully negotiating a favourable deal with the State Government in the ticket pricing issue, he said, “I don’t think so. The government will not show vengeance on the entire industry for one person. This is an industry worth several thousand crores of rupees and I am not the only person running it. There are many, many other stakeholders.”

While he criticised BJP leader H. Raja during the Mersal controversy, he also warned politicians not to interfere in the case of suicide of producer Ashok Kumar of Company Productions.

“If any MLA or MP interferes, we will take them on,” he said.

Mr Vishal’s close associates say that he had been thinking of taking the political plunge for a while as he was fed up with the politics in the State.

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