BJP uses Dadasaheb Phalke to please Rajinikanth, his fans

BJP has weaponized Dadasaheb Phalke Award to please Rajinikanth and his fans

Ram Lal Funtoosh |

Rajinikanth

Rajinikanth

By announcing the 51st Dadasaheb Phalke Award for Rajinikanth, the Narendra Modi government has shown its political cynicism. This has happened because the Bharatiya Janata Party wants to please his vast fan following.

Talking to The Hindu Chronicle, the well-known film critic Sharad Dutt said, “There is a political angle. I don’t know about his performances in Tamil movies but in Hindi movies Rajinikanth has little more than light cigarettes in a funny manner, indulged in gimmicks. There is nothing to write home about acting skills.”

The Congress rightly questioned the timing of the honor to the superstar. Congress leader Rajeev Shukla did not have problem with the honor though. In fact, he said, “This award should have been given to him long back, why is it being given this year.”

PTI quoted him as saying, “The government should not do anything which unnecessarily drags our celebrities in political controversies. Rajinikanth is a respected film personality. The BJP and the government should be wary of this and it should not try to take political advantage out of everything.”

But the BJP does that all the time. It has been trying to seek his help in the Tamil Nadu Assembly election. Rajinikanth himself was toying with the idea of joining politics. Political pundits believe that his entry into politics could help the saffron party in the southern state where it has not been able to make much headway. A few weeks ago, however, he dropped the plan of launching a political party.

The Dadasaheb Phalke Award is intended to please the star and his fans. Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar tweeted, “Happy to announce #Dadasaheb Phalke award for 2020 to one of the greatest actors in history of Indian cinema Rajnikant ji. His contribution as actor, producer and screenwriter has been iconic.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi lauded and congratulated him. He tweeted, “Popular across generations, a body of work few can boast of, diverse roles and an endearing personality…that’s Shri @rajinikanth Ji for you. It is a matter of immense joy that Thalaiva has been conferred with the Dadasaheb Phalke Award. Congratulations to him.”

The BJP deploys every weapon in its arsenal to win elections. It also weaponizes awards. This is an example.

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