Why Amitabh Bachchan quit politics?

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New Delhi, May 4: It was one incident that made Mega superstar Amitabh Bachchan rethink about his foray in the political arena, leading to his eventual resignation as Allahabad MP.

It was not the controversy generated by his alleged links in the Bofors kick backs case that forced the Big B, as he is known in the film industry and to his lakhs of fans across the country, to quit politics. Rather, it was a small incident in Assam, which brought to the fore the split among the legion of his fans - between those owing allegiance to the Congress and those with the Opposition. ''During my electioneering in Allahabad in 1984, there were political splits in families. The women were voting for me, the men for my opponent. But a factor that weighed heavily during my short stint in politics and perhaps became the decider in my decision to withdraw was an incident that occurred in Assam,''the Big B says in his latest blog. ''For the Assembly elections in that state (Assam) I was sent to campaign for the party (Congress). An error of judgment forced my helicopter to land at the wrong destination. It belonged to the opposition. There was instant physical reaction and the pilot advised us to make a hurried exit. As I sat back in the plane, a young student broke the cordon, ran up to me, thrust his fist through the glass window and handed me a piece of paper,''Mr Bachchan wrote in his blog.

The piece of paper read,''Mr Bachchan, I am a big fan of yours, but I am with the opposite party. Please leave this state, you are making life very difficult for me for I am torn between two desires.'' The fervent and emotional plea by a person who seemed an ardent admirer of him as an actor forced Amitabh Bachchan a serious rethink on his entry into the political arena.

''It was one emotional plea that left me thinking long and hard.

I felt for 25 years I had tried to woo my audience to love me as an artiste as an actor. And once I had accomplished that I was now telling them to love my politics as well. Not acceptable to me.

It was wrong. I was wrings. I was dividing my audience and my fans,''the Big B wrote in his blog.

''I was asking them to sever a leg from their body and donate it to my party. I could never do that. It was distressing for me and still is. My reticence from politics is ruled and governed by that incident and it is the reason why I shall never ever go in that domain again. I would be unfaithful to myself and to my greatest asset -- my well wishers, my fans,''the actor says.

Mr Bachchan said that earlier too, during his campaign for the Allahabad Lok Sabha seat, which he eventually won by a huge margin, he witnessed a split among his fans.

''During my electioneering in Allahabad in 1984, there were political splits in families. The women were voting for me, the men for my opponent,''he says.

However, it was the incident in Assam that became the decider in Big B's decision to withdraw from politics.

Ever since his resignation as lok Sabha MP just a few years after being elected from Alahabad, Amitabh Bachchan has time and again expressed his disinclination to re-enter the political arena.

In a recent interview, the Superstar said he didn't understand politics and 'there's absolutely no question' of his getting into it 'in any capacity'.

''I'm not into politics at all of any kind. There's absolutely no question of my going into politics. I've repeatedly said I don't understand politics, nor do I have any wish to get into it in any capacity.

Let me say once and for all I'm not going to get into it. I don't make any political statements. Nor am I on any political platform. I'm not qualified to understand or participate in any of our politics,' Mr Bachchan said.

However, his latest admission is the most candid one about the reasons for his quitting the political arena.

UNI

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