The practice of celebrities entering politics has been the trend for quite some time, but it has now become a full-blown fashion statement.
With the Lok Sabha elections around the corner, some political parties including Aam Admi Party (AAP), Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress have given party tickets to film stars to attract more eyeballs.
Here HT brings before you the celebrities who had recently joined the bandwagon and are contesting from various states of the country:
Kirron Kher:Born and brought up in Sikh family in Chandigarh, the dimpled woman completed her graduation from the City beautiful and was an avid badminton player. Making her mark in Punjabi and Bollywood movies and being a celebrity judge, the actress has been named as the BJP candidate from Chandigarh in the parliamentary elections this year.
Gul Panag:Born in Sangrur to a Punjabi army family, the former Miss India has done her bachelor's in Mathematics from Punjabi University, Patiala, and won two gold medals at Annual National Inter-University Debate competition there. A renowned Indian actress, voice actress, model, and former beauty queen, Gul competed in the Miss Universe pageant in 1999 and was crowned Best Beautiful Smile. Gul is AAP candidate from Chandigarh Lok Sabha seat.
Manoj Tiwari:A Bhojpuri singer, actor, television presenter and music director from Bihar, Tiwari is a well known face in the entertainment industry. He had contested the national elections from the Samajwadi Party (SP) ticket in 2009. He is a representative of the BJP in the Lok Sabha elections from North-east delhi seat.
Nagma:Debuting opposite Salman Khan in her first movie Baaghi - A rebel for love, Nagma has been quite popular in south movies too. Nagma, who is Congress candidate from Meerut seat, has been actively participating is politics since 2003 and was also being considered for Rajya Sabha seat once.
Ravi Kishan Shukla:Ravi Kishan is an Indian actor and television personality, who works in Hindi and Bhojpuri cinema. He is known as Amitabh Bachchan of Bhojpuri cinema and had recently joined the Congress. He is contesting the Lok Sabha elections from Jaunpur constituency in Uttar Pradesh.
Raj Babbar:Actor Raj Babbar is Congress MP from Firozabad in Uttar Pradesh. He won his fourth term by defeating Dimple Yadav, wife of Akhilesh Yadav and daughter-in-law of Mulayam Singh Yadav. He is Congress nominee from Ghaziabad.
Vinod Khanna:Actor, film producer and politician, Khanna joined the BJP in 1997 and won from Gurdaspur cosntituency in 1998 Lok Sabha elections. In 1999, he was re-elected to the Lok Sabha from the same constituency. He was also Union Minister for Culture and Tourism in July 2002. After six months of duration, he was moved to the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) as minister of state. In 2004, he won re-election from Gurdaspur. but lost out in the 2009 Lok Sabha elections. Khanna is now BJP candidate from Gurdaspur.
Shatrughan Sinha:Born in Patna, Bihar, Sinha is a well-known actor and politician. In movies his famous punchline "Khamosh" made a wave and same goes for politics too. Apart from being member of Rajya Sabha twice, he was also the Union Cabinet Minister of Health and Family Welfare (January 2003-May 2004) and shipping (August. 2004). He was elected to 15th Lok Sabha in 2009.He is BJP candidate from Patna Sahib.
Moon Moon Sen:Actress Moon Moon Sen, who is known for her role in Bengali, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Marathi and Kannada films is a Trinamool Congress candidate from Bankura Lok Sabha seat.
Bappi Lahiri:Lahiri is a renowned music director and singer who paved way in Indian music industry with Disco songs in 80s and 90s.He is making his electoral debut as the BJP candidate from Sreerampore constituency in Hooghly district of Kolkata.
Paresh Rawal:Actor Paresh Rawal, who is known for his comedian and negative roles in Bollywood movies, is the BJP candidate for the east Ahmedabad constituency in Gujarat.
Babul Suprio: A well-known Bollywood singer, Suprio had tried his hand in acting also. He is the BJP candidate from Asansol in West Bangal.
Joy Banerjee:A Bengali and Hindi movie actor, Joy Banerjee is contesting from New Delhi as a Trinamool Congress candidate.
Hema Malini: Popularly known as ‘Dreamgirl of Bollywood’, Hema Malini, is director, producer, classical dancer-choreographer, and a politician. In February 2004, she joined the BJP and since then she has been an active member of the party. In March 2010, she was declared as general secretary of the BJP. She is contesting the Lok Sabha elections from Mathura.
Rakhi Sawant:Adding more to the dose of glamour, Item girl Rakhi Sawant is also contesting elections as an independent candidate from Mumbai North-West constituency. "I was offered a BJP ticket from Srirampur in West Bengal. But I am from Mumbai and known Hindi and Marathi. I don't know the local language of West Bengal, so why should I stand from there?" she said while annpuncing her candidature.
Mahesh Manjrekar: Actor-filmmaker Mahesh Manjrekar will be contesting the Lok Sabha elections from Mumbai North-West as a Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) candidate, thus locking horns with Congress's former union minister and party general secretary Gurudas Kamat, Shiv Sena's Gajanan Kirtikar,producer-actor Kamaal R Khan of the Samajwadi Party and Mayank Gandhi of the Aam Aadmi Party. Manjrekar is known for films like "Vaastav" and "Astitva".
Kamal R Khan: SP has fielded Bollywood actor Kamaal Rashid Khan, who had created a controversy with his role in film Deshdrohi when MNS' anti-north Indian agitation was at its peak, from Mumbai North West seat.