Actor Vishal’s Political Career: It Ended Before It Even Began

Tamil film star Vishal’s political career is full of twists and turns.

4 min read
Hindi Female

In Tamil Nadu, the line between cinema and politics has always been blurred. The frenzy for movie stars bleeds onto the political fabric, and this has been proven in the cases of AIADMK’s MGR and Jayalalithaa and DMK’s Karunanidhi.

In 2017, two names have repeatedly come up when taking about taking a plunge in the already crowded political space – Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan. Even actor Vijay’s name sprouted after his controversial film Mersal was released.

The one who took us by surprise, however, was Vishal. He tried to add to that long list of those contesting the controversy-riddled seat of RK Nagar, former chief minister Jayalalithaa’s constituency, but his journey was halted even before it could take off.


Who Is Vishal?

Vishal Krishna is an actor and producer who has been working in the Tamil and Telugu film industry for many years now. He has acted in blockbuster movies like Chellame, Sandakozhi , and Thaamirabharani. He also owns a production company – Vishal Film Factory.

Contesting elections is not unchartered territory for the actor. He was elected general secretary of the Nadigar Sangam – South India Artists Association – in 2015.

He had been expelled from the Tamil Film Producers' Council (TFPC) after he accused the former members of incompetence. After apologising and being reinstated, he baffled everyone by contesting and winning the post of president of the council.


Vishal's Latest Stunts

Vishal has been quite bold in raising issues pertaining to the industry and taking it up with the state or the police.

He raised his voice against the Tamil Nadu government for levying an entertainment tax when the goods and services tax (GST) was already taking a toll on the profits of theatre owners.

He slammed BJP national secretary H Raja for watching a pirated version of Mersal online. Incidentally, a day later, the Income Tax Department officials landed at his doorstep to ‘verify documents.’

Recently, following the suicide of producer Ashok Kumar due to debt, Vishal asked the police to take stringent action against financiers who exhort money.


The Plunge Into Politics

Tamil film star Vishal’s political career is full of twists and turns.
Actor Vishal has been a strong voice in the film fraternity, not being hesitant to stand up against the state.
(Photo Courtesy: Twitter/ VishalOfficial)

It is rare that an independent candidate causes a flutter in the poll process and gets substantial media attention. Thanks to his film background and active Twitter updates, Vishal has managed to do just that.

Stating that he wanted to be the voice of RK Nagar, he had filed his nomination papers to contest the by-poll.

Top AIADMK leaders believe that Vishal’s history of winning elections related to the film industry was probably what gave him confidence to even contest the by-elections. But the two are vastly different.


A Short-Lived Career

The bypoll in RK Nagar could have been a multi-cornered battle with contestants other than the two Dravidian parties – AIADMK and DMK – competing against each other. But that was not meant to be.

The constant dilly-dallying of the Election Commission changed Vishal’s plan of action.

The Election Commission had announced that Vishal’s nomination had been rejected because two of the proposers claimed that their signatures were forged on the form. The actor produced an audio recording as evidence to prove that the proposers were threatened and bribed by E Madhusudhanan of the EPS-OPS faction of the AIADMK. He held a press conference announcing that he had received oral confirmation from the EC that his papers were accepted.

But the Returning Officer issued a statement clarifying that Vishal’s nomination papers had come under scrutiny after objections were raised over the ingenuity of the proposers, thus rejecting his application.


Political analysts Sumanth Raman and S Murari said, though the Election Commission had brought the veracity of the audio under scanner, the possible interference of rival politicians could not be ruled out. So, Vishal could have put up a fight and possibly re-enter the fray.

It was not to happen. And just like the story line of a movie, the proposers went untraceable, and then resurfaced and reiterated their stand to the EC, thus sealing Vishal’s exit.
Tamil film star Vishal’s political career is full of twists and turns.
Vishal put up a tough fight to prove his honesty.
(Photo Courtesy: Twitter/ VishalOfficial)

While some said Vishal’s Telugu background could have taken a part of the vote share away from AIADMK’s Madhusudhanan – who also hails from Andhra Pradesh, political analyst S Murari believed Vishal wasn’t strong enough to dent the votes.

Vishal is not a big player. It hardly matters. He won’t even be able to save the deposit.  
S Murari, political analyst

One way or another, Vishal did make his presence felt. The Returning Officer of the RK Nagar constituency, K Velusamy, who was at the centre of the controversy, was replaced.

But Vishal’s long week hasn’t ended just yet. On Sunday, 10 December, several members of the Producers’ Council alleged he was swindling money.


Vishal’s political stint is nothing short of a thriller, with twists and turns and an unexpected climax.

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Topics:  Jayalalithaa   AIADMK   RK Nagar Bypolls 

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