Chennai: Cutting across party lines, leaders Friday condoled the death of veteran Tamil actor S.S. Rajendran popularly known as SSR, who passed away at a private hospital here. He was 86.
In a statement issued here AIADMK general secretary J. Jayalalithaa said: "Entering the movie world through stage dramas, Rajendran got a break with the movie 'Mudalali'."
He stole the hearts of Tamilians with movies like Kumudam, Saradha, Thai Piranthal Vazhi Pirakkum and others, Jayalalithaa said.
With his clear pronunciation of Tamil movie dialogues Rajendran attracted all and also acted with current generation of movie actors, she added.
He also made his mark in the political field by being a member of state assembly and the Rajya Sabha, she said.
The DMK president M. Karunanidhi in a statement expressed his condolence on behalf his party, movie world and his family.
He said the dialogues delivered by Rajendran and his acting in the movies like Parashakthi, Rangoon Radha, Manogara, Poompuhar, Kanchi Thalaivan, Manimagudam are still memorable.
MDMK general secretary Vaiko in his condolence message said Rajendran won the Theni assembly constituency, considered a Congress fortress, in 1962 on the DMK ticket.
"He crafted an independent style for himself in the movie world and attracted all with his magnetic voice," Vaiko said.
Tamil Nadu BJP leader Tamilisai Soundararajan also conveyed her condolence.
Known as 'Latchiya Nadigar' (Principled Actor) Rajendran was suffering from lung problem.
"He was admitted to Meenakshi Hospital yesterday (Thursday) in critical condition. He passed away this morning (Friday) due to issues related to lung infection," a family source told IANS.
Earlier this year, Rajendran was hospitalised for lung infection.
Rajendran, who made his cinematic debut with 1952 Tamil film "Parasakthi", also starred in films like "Ratha Kanner", "Rangoon Radha" and "Sivagangai Seemai".
Having acted in over 50 Tamil films, Rajendran was treated on par with legends such as M.G. Ramachandran and Sivaji Ganeshan.
For nearly two decades, Rajendran was active in politics. He was known as the first actor-legislator of Indian politics.
Under the establishment of SSR Pankajam, he and his wife Pankajam had built a cinema theatre, film studio and recording theatre.