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Kannada actor Upendra to launch political party

Bengaluru: Kannada film star Upendra on Saturday announced that he will launch a new political party in the state, where Assembly polls are due early next year.

The actor, who has been on and off dropping hints about his political entry, said he plans to form a party that creates a platform for talents who have ideas and skills to solve people's problems.

Clad in a khaki shirt, the "real star" as called by his fans, said the dress symbolises that the party doesn't want 'Jana nayaka' or 'Jana sevaka' (public leader or public servant), but 'Jana karmika' (public worker) who stays in a particular area and honestly works for people there, for a salary.

Upendra, who began his film career as a dialogue writer, has directed about 10 films and acted in about 50 films.

"....giving a complete transparent alternative is my idea. With this intention we plan to launch a party," he told reporters.

"Everyone should come forward, it is an open form. Please come forward and share your ideas without any hesitation or feelings that politics needs money or muscle power or caste support. Lets all- people- join together for a new beginning," he added.

The announcement comes a day after he gave a clear indication about his political plunge through an audio clip released on Friday, where he said "somebody has to take the responsibility to change things. I am ready to take it."
It was earlier being speculated that Upendra will be joining BJP, ahead of assembly polls.

He said he would come out with a name for the party after discussing it with those who are willing to join him.

Upendra asked people to share their ideas for his new party through a newly created e-mail id or through letters.

"Prajaniti, Prajakiya and Prajakarana is the form, party name or symbol.. I cannot say as of now as we have to apply for it yet. Once it gets formalised, I will share with you," he said.

Asserting that a transparency will be maintained at all levels, even while selecting candidates, he said "we will share what is his/her qualification and ideas they have to solve public concerns or problems."

Noting that the main idea is to ensure that there is no leakage in public money, Upendra said if it is properly utilised, "we can create wonders like good health and education, infrastructure for the poor."

Upendra said he had got political offer from different parties in the past, but did not wish to name them.

He said "I'm not blaming any political party or anybody....they have all got entangled in a circle. Even if I had gone, I would have become like that."

He said he had one more film commitment and after completing it, he will entirely dedicate his time and energy for his party cause.

He, however, did not give any clear answers when asked by when he would formally announce the party and decide candidates for elections as the time is very short.

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