Superstar Rajinikanth turned 70 on Saturday and his fans thronged his residence here to celebrate while Prime Minister Narendra Modi and a host of leaders extended their wishes.
Many supporters and fans who gathered outside his home, wore T-shirts with brightly embossed image of the actor and his political catchphrases like ‘Ippo Illaina Eppovaum Illai’ (Now or never) as they appeared swept by political fervour with their favourite star’s recent announcement of party launch.
On December 3, Rajinikanth announced launch of his political party in January 2021 ending years of suspense and speculation on his political entry. Assembly elections are due in Tamil Nadu in April-May next year.
The jubilant fans cut a cake shouting ‘Thalaiva Vaazhga’ (Leader livelong) and they distributed sweets to the people in many places.
Several fans, including women who arrived at his home since early morning to wish him personally were disappointed when they were told that Rajinikanth was not available and his absence was confirmed by his public relations team.
Many supporters offered prayers at places of worship and some brought ‘prasad’ from temples to the actor’s home.
‘Aatchi Matram, Arasiyal Matram Ippo Illaina Eppovum Illai,’ (Political/regime change, now or never) and ’Thalaivarum Mudalvarum Neeye’ (You are our leader and chief minister) were among the slogans found printed on the shirts of the actor’s supporters.
The fans stuck wall posters as well hailing him in many parts of the city and in the vicinity of his residence in the upscale Poes Garden area.
‘The fearless,’ The future of Tamil Nadu’ were some of the choicest words picked by Rajinikanth’s followers to describe him.
On his twitter handle, Prime Minister Narendra Modi greeted the actor. ‘Dear @rajinikanth Ji, wishing you a Happy Birthday! May you lead a long and healthy life.’
Chief Minister K Palaniswami tweeted wishing the actor a long and healthy life.
DMK chief M K Stalin spoke to the actor over phone and wished him. In his Facebook page, the Dravidian party leader extended his best wishes.
BJP national general secretary and party in charge of Tamil Nadu, C T Ravi were among other who wished him.
‘#HappyBirthdayRajinikanth’ was the top trending tag on Twitter. His supporters also used a common ‘DP’ (Display picture) in social media to symbolise his evolution from a noted actor into a much adored top star, whose political entry was being eagerly awaited by his followers.
Born Shivaji Rao Gaekwad on December 12, 1950 he was christened ‘Rajinikanth,’ by ace Tamil filmmaker K Balachander in whose 1975 flick ‘Apporva Raagangal’ he debuted, in a supportive role.