As Vijay launches his party, a look at other south superstars in politics - Hindustan Times

Vijay announces political party: A look at Rajinikanth, Kamal Haasan, other south actors who also launched their parties

Feb 02, 2024 05:38 PM IST

Tamil actor Vijay announced his political party Tamilaga Vettri Kazhagam on Friday. Looking back at south stars, who also launched their own political parties.

Making a switch from the silver screen to politics. Banking on the love they garnered from fans by playing larger-than-life characters transforming into votes – it all feels like a familiar story in south India. In the precedent set by MGR in Tamil Nadu and NT Rama Rao in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil actor Vijay announced on Friday that he is forming a political party, Tamilaga Vettri Kazhagam, to ‘bring about the change that people want.’ Here’s a look at a few famous south Indian stars, who joined politics. (Also Read: When Kamal Haasan admitted to representing his politics via films: ‘It is not right to remain detached’)

Tamil actor Vijay launched his party Tamilaga Vettri Kazhagam on Friday.
Tamil actor Vijay launched his party Tamilaga Vettri Kazhagam on Friday.


Rajinikanth was a staunch supporter of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and Tamil Maanila Congress in the early 1990s. While it was expected he would contest in elections then, he chose not to. He announced his entry into politics only in 2017 and formed the Rajini Makkal Mandram in Tamil Nadu. He dissolved it in 2021 and announced he no longer wanted to be a politician.

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Kamal Haasan

Kamal formed the Makkal Needhi Maiam in 2018 in Tamil Nadu. He began his political journey from the late President AP J Abdul Kalam's residence and memorial at Rameswaram. While his party contested in 37 seats in the 2019 general election, apart from the legislative assembly election and lost, Kamal’s political party remains active.


In 2008, Chiranjeevi announced the Praja Rajyam Party in the then united Andhra Pradesh. The next year, his party won 18 of the 294 seats at the legislative assembly. In 2011, Chiranjeevi shocked everyone, when he merged his party with the Indian National Congress. He was sworn in as a Rajya Sabha member in 2012. After AP split in 2014, he stayed away from politics, ending his tenure in 2018.

Pawan Kalyan

Even before his brother Chiranjeevi stepped away from politics, Pawan Kalyan announced the Jana Sena Party in 2014 in both AP and Telangana. With his other brother Naga Babu as the general secretary, Pawan supported BJP and TDP instead of Congress, unlike Chiranjeevi. The party failed to win seats in 2019. Years later in 2024, Pawan continues to support the parties he initially did.


In 2018, Upendra announced Uttama Prajaakeeya Party in Karnataka. While Upendra himself has refrained from contesting for seats, he had candidates across numerous constituencies in Karnataka during the 2019 elections. He announced that his party would be for the rights of the daily wage workers, and one of his candidates even won the elections in Arehalli village.

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