Kamal talks about ‘thalaivar’ & ‘thondar’Published: April 27, 2016
Kamal Haasan was in Coimbatore recently, to attend the launch of a new version of Mahatma Gandhi’s ‘Sathya Sothanai’. (The Tamil version of Gandhi’s autobiography ‘My experiments with Truth’). The book was penned by veteran writer Andal Priyadarshini.
Speaking on the occasion, Kamal said, “I have been doing research on ahimsa for decades and it took me so long to realise that non-violence is the most powerful tool in the world. It has won many powerful battles and created world-class leaders. There was a time when even the rationalist Periyar was critical of Gandhi. But he changed his stance towards the end, and praised him for his work.”
Kamal further said: “I fall in the same category. I used to criticise Gandhi, but now I am an ardent follower of his principles. Every time I thought I knew something about the man, I would learn more about him. It’s not easy to be Mahatma. The reason Gandhi could reach such great heights was because he was more of a thondar (follower), than a thalaivar (leader). Today, he is a symbol of the nation.”
“Politicians today are busy gathering votes, chasing power and scheming against others. Where do they have the time to discuss Gandhi? That being said, Gandhi is beyond politics. He should not be associated with any political party and neither should any party claim him,” Kamal added.