One movie star is minister, others fade into background

One movie star is minister, others fade into background


Jayamala, leading lady in a host of Rajkumar films, is now in the Kumaraswamy Cabinet.

She holds a double distinction: she is the only woman in the ministry, and the only representative of the film industry in the government. 

Metrolife spoke to well-known actors now active in politics, and asked them where they stood.


Hero of countless comedies, defeated BJP candidate from Yeshwanthpur

“I was a last-minute candidate. This is not the first time I am contesting elections and I am well aware of the work required to connect with people at the grassroots. I didn’t know much about the constituency. I turned down the ticket, but party leaders convinced me to contest. I took it as a challenge. I had just nine days and a half to campaign and Yeshwanthpur is one of the biggest constituencies, with 5.5 lakh voters and 400 booths. Time was limited and also, rival parties paid off voters. I gave it my best shot but didn’t succeed.”

About Jayamala

“We belong to different parties but I am jubilant someone from the movie industry is represented in the ministry. She is a great leader and changemaker. When I was going through a bad patch in my career in 1994, she and Rajkumar sir supported me. I can never forget her helping nature.”

CP Yogeeshwara

Actor, BJP candidate from Channapatna who lost to H D Kumaraswamy

“I was an actor by coincidence and am a committed politician. I am hardworking but it was a challenge to fight the elections. I wanted to make the constituency a model one when it comes to irrigation and water supply. I was not able to get votes because of casteist politics. Though even I am a Vokkaliga like my rival, people from the community went with JD(S).”

About Jayamala

“Appointing her as a minister is a good decision. Being a woman and leader, I am sure she will do justice to her role.”


Actor who floated Uttama Prajakiya Party (UPP)

“I couldn’t contest the elections but it was a great experience to learn about many things. I don’t consider it a loss. In fact, I have been able to learn and observe how people are, how they change and who is genuine. Our party aims at bringing about permanent solutions to problems. We need to forget blame games. Accountability, responsibility and transparency will be our key concepts. We will be fully prepared for the next elections.”

About Jayamala

“She has proved her leadership capabilities as president of the Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce. She is a good choice.”