Arvind Kejriwal meets Kamal Haasan in Chennai amidst speculations of new political alignment


Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday met the veteran Tamil actor, Kamal Haasan at his residence in Chennai amidst speculations of a new political realignment in Tamil Nadu.

After his meeting, Kejriwal said, “We had an excellent meeting. We exchanged our ideas. He (Kamal Haasan) should enter into politics. We will continue to discuss and meet each other in future also.”

This, according to many are being viewed as a sign that the veteran actor could be persuaded to join Aam Aadmi Party, although realistically it looks a tall order.

Haasan for his part said that both he and Kejriwal were fighting the corruption.

He said, “I’m honored that the CM of Delhi decided to visit my abode. The reason why we came together is that the purpose is secularism. I’ve always been secular. He (Kejriwal) of course has bigger profile on that. The purpose is to fight corruption and communalism.”

One AAP leader said that Kejriwal had specially flown to Chennai to have this ‘important meeting’ with the popular actor. Last time both had met was at the Delhi secretariat in 2015, when Haasan wanted concessions for film industry in the national capital.

The actor has in the past reacted in disgust against the existing political parties in India. He had even met the Kerala Chief Minister Pinrayi Vijayan giving rise to speculations that he may go with the Left party.

But, weeks later, he expressed his intention to a float a new party in Tamil Nadu. One AAP source said that they wouldn’t rule out Haasan joining the Kejriwal’s party as this will also allow the Delhi chief minister to work on his party’s expansion in the south.

“We’ve already planned to contest elections in Gujarat and Rajasthan. We did fairly well in Punjab and managed to build a base for us in Goa. Given the disenchantment for the existing parties in Tamil Nadu, there’s a space for an alternative politics. This gives us hope that Kamal Haasan ji and Arvind will make a formidable force,” said an AAP leader not wishing to be named.

Tamil Nadu plunged into a political crisis earlier this week when 18 MLAs loyal to V Sasikala were disqualified by the Assembly Speaker. The state has witnessed a constant political crisis since the death of former chief minister, J Jayalalithaa.

The state provides an opportunity for both Kejriwal and Haasan to make themselves relevant given that Congress has become history and voters have increasingly become unhappy with with two traditional parties namely AIADMK and DMK. As for the BJP, the party has failed to make any significant inroads even after contesting several elections here.