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Rajinikanth forum files for TV channel trademark

Superstar TV, Rajini TV, Thalaivar TV are some of the names under consideration

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MUMBAI: Things are getting interesting as India’s general elections loom ahead next year and as film stars poise to join the political bandwagon. Ahead of the launch of superstar Rajinikanth's political party, efforts are underway for starting a television channel by a forum floated by him.

The actor has authorised the use of his name and photograph in the proposed TV channel’s logo. 

In a letter to the Registrar of Trademarks, Rajinikanth has stated that an application made by the forum chief for trademarks be processed and he had no objection to the use of his name and photo in the logo of the proposed channel.

The matter came to light after the letter went viral on social media and sources close to the Tamil actor Friday confirmed its veracity, a PTI report from Chennai said.

Administrator of the Rajini Makkal Mandram, seen as a precursor to his party, V M Sudhakar applied for the trademarks  SUPERSTAR TV, RAJINI TV, THALAIVAR TV, which all have references to the actor.

The move is seen as keeping in line with the tradition of political parties in Tamil Nadu having their own TV channels to effectively propagate their policies and programmes.

Indiantelevision.com could not independently confirm whether the superstar’s colleagues, managing the forum backed by him, have also applied for necessary permissions to the government. Ministry of Information and Broadcasting sources refused to comment on the issue.

Meanwhile, the PTI report stated while the ruling AIADMK had recently launched 'News J' to propagate its views, a bouquet of channels under the Kalaignar TV and the Maran family-owned Sun TV are said to be backing the opposition DMK.

Jaya TV, managed by the relatives of jailed aide of former chief minister J Jayalalithaa, V K Sasikala, was originally a mouthpiece of the AIADMK. But now the channel backs sidelined party leader T T V Dhinakaran since his fallout with current Chief Minister K Palaniswami last year.

In his letter to the Trademarks Registrar, Rajinikanth said he had "no objection to use my name, photo on the logo and label", adding the applications may be processed to the "next level". 

The 68-year old actor had announced taking the political plunge in December 2017 while interacting with his fans here.

Broadcast carriage regulator TRAI in an earlier recommendation made several years ago, gathering dust at MIB, had stated that government entities, political parties and/or active politicians should not be allowed direct entry into broadcasting space.

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