Chennai: Promising to usher in a new Tamil Nadu, actor turned politician Kamal Hassan on Wednesday took the plunge by launching his political party Makkal Needhi Maiam (People’s Justice Centre) and declared that he desired to be only a tool in the hands of the people and not their leader.
He made it clear that his ideology was neither Left nor Right-leaning but centrist and that he would imbibe good ideas that come from any direction. Hassan started his political journey by launching a road show from the house of late President APJ Abdul Kalam in coastal Ramanathapuram, which is also the actor’s home district, and drove down to Madurai waving to hundreds of fans at different points en route.
In the evening, at a vast ground in Y Othakadai in Madurai, he hoisted his party’s flag – six human hands in a white backdrop juxtaposed with a star — in front of a mammoth gathering. Explaining the significance of the flag, he said the six hands denote the five southern states and the Union Territory of Puducherry and the star represents the people.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, along with his former Cabinet colleague Somnath Bharti, watched the actor hoist the flag and later announced the name of his party. Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan greeted the actor via video conferencing.
“We dream. A new party, a new path, a new ideology. Makkal Needhi Maiam. Let Tamil Nadu awake,” Hassan said. “It’s been 70 years since Independence. Yet, our State is now afflicted with a mediocre polity, resulting in a development lacuna. The time has come to make a change. Let us become the change. Tomorrow is ours,” he declared.