When movie stars become politicians 

by Madhvi Bansal

Three weeks ago, the Indian National Congress party, which is hoping to make a rebound in the continuous general race, handled Urmila Matondkar, a Bollywood star whose prime was during the 1990s, as a possibility for the Mumbai North constituency. 

While the decision surprised many, the crowds that she pulled in at her rallies in the metropolis by and by featured the relationship Bollywood shares with Indian politics. Not exclusively do Bollywood celebrities bring genuinely necessary star capacity to a political crusade, yet in a star-struck country, the rhetoric skills of these actors enhance the policies a party is hoping to push to global society. 

For a political stage as fevered as India’s, showbiz is not only tinsel to toss at the electorate – it is an essential segment of a syntax through which parties meet up with people in general. 

Stars from the Socialist Era 

Aside from the apparent bait of allure, Bollywood shares a historical association with Indian politics. In the pre-web time, films and film stars were an ersatz social media, before social media existed. 

During the 1960s, Prithviraj Kapoor, the patriarch of Bollywood’s first family, the Kapoors, was the Hindi film industry’s first section into Parliament as an assigned individual from its upper house (Rajya Sabha). In socialist India, driven by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first prime minister, the film stars who were most loved were those who mirrored the country’s agrarian zeitgeist. 

That ’70s Show 

It is not just superstars who played farmers or villagers who have fiddled with politics. Actors from urban blockbusters of the 1980s are especially fixtures in the country’s political landscape. Amitabh Bachchan, Shatrughan Sinha, Dharmendra, Vinod Khanna, Hema Malini, Rekha, Jaya Bachchan, and Mithun Chakraborty have all been parliamentarians after their prime in B-town. Of these, perhaps the most bewildering case is that of Amitabh Bachchan. 

India’s reigning uber-star in 1984, he contested elections that year, persuaded by his close companion Rajiv Gandhi, at that point India’s prime minister. Bachchan seemed set for a long inning in New Delhi, be that as it may, his stint in politics was surprisingly short-lived, and he dropped out with the Indian National Congress. During the 1990s, notwithstanding, when Bachchan failed, Amar Singh from the Samajwadi Party safeguarded him out – and Bachchan turned into a mouthpiece for the party.