Actor-turned-politician Chiranjeevi, who has always been against splitting Andhra Pradesh, has resigned from his post of Union Tourism Minister in protest against the Union Cabinet's approval of the formation of separate Telangana, his aide said. The Tollywood actor has faxed his resignation to the Office of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, his personal assistant said.
Chiranjeevi, who hails from Coastal Andhra, felt anguished over the way the protests in Seemandhra regions going on for over two months, against the division of Andhra Pradesh were handled. He has come under intense pressure from the united-Andhra supporters in the Coastal Andhra and Rayalaseema regions following the Congress Working Committee's endorsement of separate Telangana demand on July 30.
After late veteran actor Nandamuri Rama Rao, the Megastar Chiranjeevi is the next Telugu film star, who has opposed and condemned the idea of curving out Telengana from the united-Andhra Pradesh. But following the UPA's decision, the Samaikhyandhra supporters, who are upset with the actor, have been demanding that he should quit his post to mount pressure on the Congress leadership towards halting the division of Andhra Pradesh.
We bring you the brief information about Chiranjeevi's journey from an actor to a Union Tourism Minister. Continue to read it in the slideshow.
Chiranjeevi's Debut In Films
Chiranjeevi debuted in films with Pranam Khareedu in 1978. He starred in 149 movies and ruled Tollywood for nearly three decades.
Beginning Of Chiru's Political Career
Chiranjeevi enjoyed huge fan following in these three decades. Hoping that he could surpass late NTR, the megastar decided to plunge into politics. He intended to bring transformation in the society.
Praja Rajyam Party Launch
In 2008, Chiranjeevi started Praja Rajyam, a political party in the state of Andhra Pradesh. At the launch, he stated that social justice was the main agenda of his party.
Chiru's Victory In 2009 Elections
In the 2009 general elections the party won 18 seats in the Andhra Pradesh State Assembly. He was elected a Member of the State Assembly from Tirupati.
Chiru's Failure To Be A Leader
While Chiranjeevi was expected to win the elections and form the government, he could only win 18 seats, which proved that he was not successful leader like the way he ruled the box office for decades.
Chiru's Distribution Of Seats
In this election, Chiranjeevi had distributed 104 seats to back ward caste candidates and more than 100 seats to SC and ST members out of a total 294 available for the legislative assembly seats.
Chiru's Created History
In the history of Indian politics after Independence, all the political parties restricted the candidacy of these people to the reserved seats. But Chiru did it in bid to uplift the downtrodden people.
PRP- Congress Merge
On 6 February 2011, Chiranjeevi merged the 30-month-old Praja Rajyam party with Indian National Congress after two weeks of back talks with Sonia Gandhi, the president of the Congress.
Chiru As Union Minister
After more than one year of merging his party into Congress, he was given the Rajya Sabha seat on 29 March 2012. He took oath as Rajya Sabha member on 3 April 2012. On 28 October 2012 he was sworn in as the Union Minister of State, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India.
Chiranjeevi's Opposition Against Split
Before joining politics, Chiranjeevi has been opposing the idea of splitting the state. His Praja Rajyam Party was also against the division of the state. But its merger with the Congress in 2011 handicapped him. Although he had been convincing Congress supremos to keep the state united, he had to finally bend before the party.