Kangana Ranaut: From stardom to political aspirations

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Kangana Ranaut: From stardom to political aspirations

Wednesday, 03 April 2024 | K S Tomar

Kangana Ranaut: From stardom to political aspirations

Kangana’s evolution from a silver screen sensation to a grassroots politician unfolds against a backdrop of controversy and high expectations

In line with the 19th-century Victorian realist philosophy of ‘Chance and destiny’ championed by Thomas Hardy, Kangana Ranaut’s journey from an obscure village in Himachal Pradesh to the glamorous world of Bollywood and now to the realm of politics seems like an unimaginable dream turned into reality. Her indomitable spirit and unwavering determination have propelled her from testing her luck in the film industry in Mumbai to considering a political career in her hilly home state.

Kangana’s ascent from the nondescript village of Bhambala in Mandi district is a testament to her sheer willpower and commitment. Despite facing resistance from her family, who initially opposed her choice to pursue a career in Bollywood, Kangana forged ahead, overcoming financial struggles and the harsh realities of life in Mumbai. Her journey was fraught with challenges, with her even lacking a proper place to live at times. However, her training under renowned theatre director Arvind Gaur proved to be a turning point, honing her skills and shaping her into the formidable talent she is today.

Transitioning from the glitz and glamour of Bollywood to the rough and tumble world of politics is no small feat. Kangana’s decision to enter active politics, particularly by contesting the Mandi Lok Sabha seat, signifies a significant shift in her career trajectory. Despite her lack of experience in politics, her unwavering support for Hindutva ideology and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, coupled with her association with the RSS, has garnered her the BJP ticket, setting the stage for a potentially dramatic political showdown.

However, Kangana’s foray into politics is not without its challenges. Unlike the scripted narratives of films, political reality demands a different set of skills and commitments. Voters in Mandi will expect her to prioritise their needs and concerns, necessitating her to establish a permanent presence in the constituency. Her inexperience in political manoeuvring will require her to work doubly hard to earn the trust and support of the electorate, notwithstanding the backing of the BJP machinery and the charisma of Prime Minister Modi.

The bypoll for the Mandi Lok Sabha seat held on October 30, 2021, saw the Congress candidate securing victory, largely due to the sympathy factor following the demise of Virbhadra Singh. However, with the political landscape shifting and the Congress party grappling with internal strife, Kangana’s entry into the fray could potentially tilt the scales in her favour.

Kangana’s nomination for the Mandi seat on her 37th birthday was seen as a fitting tribute to her unwavering commitment to her ideological beliefs and her determination to serve her birthplace. However, her propensity for controversy, evident in her social media posts and public statements, has garnered both acclaim and criticism. From her remarks on the farmer’s agitation to her views on India’s independence, Kangana has courted controversy, often finding herself embroiled in heated debates and facing backlash from various quarters.

As she embarks on this new chapter in her life, Kangana will need to shed her filmy persona and connect with the grassroots workers and voters on a more personal level. Building rapport with the electorate and demonstrating a genuine understanding of their needs will be crucial for her success as a politician.

In conclusion, Kangana Ranaut’s journey from Bollywood to politics is a testament to her resilience and determination. While her transition may be fraught with challenges, her unwavering commitment to her beliefs and her desire to serve her people could pave the way for a successful political career. As she navigates this new terrain, Kangana will need to draw upon her strengths and adapt to the demands of the political arena, all while staying true to her roots and convictions.

(The writer is a political analyst; views are personal)

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