The first Film star who won the Lok Sabha election was a Telugu actor Kongara Jaggaiah who dominated Telugu cinema in the ’50s and ’60s. He was active in social work since college days hence inspired by Jawaharlal Nehru’s appeal he joined Congress and was elected to Lok Sabha in 1967 as the member from Ongole (Andhra Pradesh). He won the election with huge 80,000 votes and his huge popularity opened doors for other actors to join politics.
From Bollywood, the actor who left his imprint in politics as a ‘Clean Man’ was Sunil Dutt, father of actor Sanjay Dutt. He joined the Indian National Congress party in 1984 and in his first election he defeated popular Advocate Ram Jethmalani with double the opponent’s vote. Later Sunil Dutt was elected to the Parliament of India for five terms from the constituency of Mumbai North West. Dutt also served as the Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports in the Manmohan Singh government (2004–2005).
After Sunil Dutt, the only actor to won maximum 4 terms of Lok Sabha was Bollywood’s most Debonair Star Vinod Khanna, who joined BJP in 1997 and won from Gurdaspur constituency in Punjab. He won four Lok Sabha polls (1998, 1999, 2004 and 2014). However, Khanna lost out in the 2009 general elections but was back with a bang in the 2014 general election. Khanna served as Union minister of state for tourism and culture, as well as external affairs.
‘Bihari Babu’ aka Shatrughan Sinha started his political career on a low note as he was defeated by his opponent actor Rajesh Khanna in 1984. However later he won two terms consecutively Lok Sabha (2009–2014, 2014–2019). He was also Union Cabinet Minister of Health and Family Welfare (Jan 2003 – May 2004) and Shipping (Aug. 2004) and in 2006, he was appointed as the head of the BJP Culture and Arts Department. In coming 2019 election, Shatrughan Sinha would be contesting election on Congress ticket as he quit BJP due to ill-treatment.
Actor Raj Babbar is perhaps the only Bollywood actor who joined as many as three political parties. He joined Janata Dal in 1989. He contested the election on Samajwadi Party and was elected as Member of Parliament of India three times. He joined Congress in 2008 and was elected for his fourth term as Member of Parliament in 2009, by defeating Dimple Yadav, wife of Akhilesh Yadav and daughter-in-law of Mulayam Singh Yadav. In the 2019 Lok Sabha election, Raj Babbar will contest from Fatehpur Sikri (Uttar Pradesh).
Paresh Rawal, the brilliant Gujarati stage actor, and Bollywood’s top-notch character actor is a staunch Narendra Modi aficionado. He joined BJP in 2014 and won the Ahmedabad East seat but for the forthcoming 2019 election, he has opted out of the election.
Babul Supriyo, playback singer was a surprise winner in 2014 Election. He became the youngest minister in BJP government.
Manoj Tiwari, Bhojpuri film star in 2009, Tiwari contested elections for the 15th Lok Sabha on Samajwadi Party but lost to Yogi Adityanath hence he joined BJP and in 2014 he won North East Delhi Lok Sabha constituency.
Tapas Pual, Kolkata film superstar won consecutively two Lok Sabha election 2004 and 2009 on Mamta Banerjee’s All India Trinamool Congress Party ticket but his involvement in a scam Ponzi firm Rose Valley Group ruined his political career.