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The political life of Mithun Chakraborty closes the circle | India News

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If politics is color, Mithun Chakraborty has seen all the nuances. In his youth, he embraced extreme red. The tone became clearer with success as he befriended CPM politicians. Later, he turned blue by becoming a member of Rajya Sabha, courtesy of the centrist Trinamool. On Sunday, the 70-year-old actor’s political life came full circle when he smeared himself in saffron by joining BJP. “Koi shaque? (Any doubts?) ”, As the fauji he played in Ghulami would have asked.
In 1969, Mithun was asked by his father to leave Calcutta because of his relationship with the Naxalites. After a BA in acting from the Pune Film Institute, he struggled for years before finding box office gold as an action dance star.
But his pro-poor orientation persisted. In 1986, he took the lead in organizing the Calcutta version of Hope 86, a concert to aid workers in the Bombay film industry. Mithun’s closeness to Bengal Sports Minister and CPM leader Subhas Chakraborty helped green light a project that had initially encountered strong opposition.
In 2014, the actor joined Rajya Sabha. Around the same time, he got caught up in the Sharada Chit Fund scam and was summoned by ED. He left the Upper House for health reasons in 2016. According to PRS Legislative Research, he did not ask any questions, did not participate in a single debate, and was 10% in attendance in Parliament.
There was speculation about his new political affiliation when he met with RSS Supreme Mohan Bhagwat on February 17, a meeting that was later described as personal, not political. It was political, not personal, when on Sunday Prime Minister Modi addressed him as “Banglar chhele” (Bengal Boy). The prime minister hailed him for overcoming difficulties to achieve a successful career. There was a time when Mithun admitted that he slept on the sidewalks and paid 50 rupees for the space. In the 1990s, Rashtriya Samman was regularly awarded for being one of the largest contributors in the country.
On Sunday, the actor described himself as “a Cobra.” The self-description sounded as filmy as the iconic dialogue from the Bengali film, MLA Phatakeshto, “Marbo ekhane lash podbe shashane (He will hit you here and the body will land in the crematorium).
Not just politics, even Mithun’s film career is a heady cocktail of contradictions. No Bollywood filmography is such a unique mix of the sublime, the regular, and the stupid: Mrigayaa, Tahader Katha, The Naxalites, Gunda, Jallaad, Hitler, Surakksha, Disco Dancer, Ghulami, Pyaar Jhukta Nahin, Agneepath, and Golmaal 3. Received the national award for best actor for Mrigayaa and Tahader Katha.
“I do three types of movies. A kind of movie that I make just for money. Another I do it just to satisfy myself. The third type I do is please my fans, ”he told this reporter in 2010. In his prime, Mithun Chakraborty was not just a hero; it was an idea whose time had come. It was the star that emerged when cinemas faced a video piracy crisis and the nobility had abandoned them. It remains to be seen if the love of the masses now finds the same resonance in his Bengal BJP avatar.

Times of India

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