When will south superstar Rajinikanth enter the poll fray? The wait is likely to be over soon if one were to go by the signals coming out of the Rajini camp. The 68-year-old actor has been terribly busy lately, ostensibly adding the finishing touches to most of his projects. His Rajini Makkal Mandram (Rajini People's Organisation) has been up and running for two years now, though he has said time and again that he would not contest election in 2019, but would be ready to take the plunge during the next Assembly elections in Tamil Nadu. In Trichy some days back, Rajini's brother Sathyanarayana Rao Gaikwad said, after inaugurating their parents' memorial, that the actor will make an announcement after May 23. So there you are...
Tagore in the world
India’s soft power is mostly gauged in terms of the global popularity of yoga, Bollywood films and cuisine. One less acknowledged trend is the enduring popularity of Rabindranath Tagore. Ironically, nowhere is this more visible than in China. Not only have Tagore's works been translated into Mandarin, a selection of his poetry, essays and short stories is part of the national school syllabus. Even more improbably, Tagore appears to be revered in Kazakhstan too. Recently, a visiting delegation of the National Cadet Corps to this Central Asian republic attended a memorial programme on the occasion of the poet's birth anniversary and reported a surprisingly high turnout.
Out of retirement?
Looks like former West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, who had all but withdrawn from active politics after Mamata Banerjee defeated his Left Front government in West Bengal in the Assembly elections of 2011, is planning to come out of retirement. In an interview to the Communist Party of India (Marxist) or CPI (M) mouthpiece Ganashakti, he had a word of warning for the state's CPI (M) cadre. He said quitting Trinamool to join the Bharatiya Janata Party was like jumping from the frying pan to the fire. Among other things, he also insinuated that the Trinamool and the BJP were hand in glove. "We need to uproot this kind of politics," he added.