Explore the remarkable life of Vijayakanth, Tamil cinema’s ‘Captain’ turned influential politician, as we delve into his cinematic legacy, political impact, and his final moments in Chennai. Discover the journey of this iconic figure whose legacy left an indelible mark on both screens and politics.
Vijayakanth, the iconic figure renowned for his roles in Tamil cinema and as the founder of DMDK, passed away in Chennai at the age of 71 after battling an illness. Earlier reports revealed his hospitalization and subsequent use of ventilator support due to breathing issues. His body was brought home before being taken to the DMDK office.
His health struggles weren’t new; he was previously admitted to MIOT Hospital in Chennai due to deteriorating health, enduring a 14-day observation period for cough and throat pain.
Known fondly as ‘Captain’, Vijayakanth’s life showcased a successful stint in Tamil cinema, appearing in 154 films before diving into politics. Notably, his involvement with the Nadigar Sangam ushered in transformative changes in the South Indian film industry.
His political journey began with the establishment of DMDK in 2005. Despite a modest start in the 2006 elections, where the party secured only 10% of the total vote share and limited victories, their fortunes changed in 2011 when allied with AIADMK. This collaboration won 26 out of 41 constituencies, positioning DMDK as a prominent opposition force, surpassing DMK’s seat count.
Vijayakanth held the position of Opposition Leader in the Tamil Nadu Assembly from 2011 to 2016. However, rifts led to DMDK severing ties with AIADMK, resulting in the loss of its opposition status due to mass resignations of DMDK MLAs.
His political career included two terms as a Member of the Legislative Assembly representing Virudhachalam and Rishivandiyam constituencies. Yet, the party faced setbacks in various elections, notably in 2014 when allied with the NDA, and in subsequent years due to his health battles.