Indian actor Rajinikanth cancelled plans to enter politics, saying a recent health scare had been “a warning from God”.
The 70-year-old’s announcement on Tuesday came one day after the actor left hospital where he was treated for high blood pressure.
Rajinikanth set off celebrations by his fans when he announced early in December that he would be launching a political party in a bid to bring “corruption-free” government to his home state of Tamil Nadu.
In a lengthy letter on Twitter, Rajnikanth said: “I am sorry to let you know that I am not going to launch a political party.”
“I will serve the people in whatever ways I can, without entering electoral politics,” he wrote in the Tamil.
Rajinikanth said he did not want to start such a major campaign and then leave it unfinished.
The actor said he cannot trigger his desired uprising by campaigning merely through social media and videos.
“If I venture out, it could become a big risk for all, especially when a second wave of the virus is spreading. If a well-organised film shoot can result in my hospitalization for three days, participating in an election campaign could become even more risky and I do not want to leave people in the lurch midway,” he said.
Rajinikanth said in 2017 that he wanted to enter politics but then left his fans waiting until this month when he said his party would bring “honest, transparent” politics to Tamil Nadu.
The actor proved his political muscle in 1996 when he called on fans to oppose the Tamil Nadu government led by the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) party, which was then voted out of power.
The AIADMK and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) party have dominated politics in the southern state for the past 50 years.
Rajinikanth has carried on with his film career despite his health concerns and had been shooting his latest movie in Hyderabad when he was taken ill last week.