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4-min read

#RIPActorVijay Trending for a Hale and Hearty Star is the New Low in Twitterverse

On Monday, Tamil star Vijay became the victim of a bizarre hashtag despite being alive and well. #RIPActorVijay started trending after many social media users started tweeting with this hashtag.

Bohni Bandyopadhyay | News18.com

Updated:July 29, 2019, 1:20 PM IST
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#RIPActorVijay Trending for a Hale and Hearty Star is the New Low in Twitterverse
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In the bizarre world of Twitter trends, we come across weird hashtags pertaining to anything that catches the Twitterverse's fancy. There have been many occasions when rumours about the death of an actor spread on the Internet after someone erroneously reported that he/she has died. Morgan Freeman has been a victim of such hoaxes multiple times.

Usually, a news report is the root cause of a #RIP trend. But on Monday, Tamil star Vijay became the victim of a bizarre hashtag despite being hale and hearty. #RIPActorVijay started trending after many social media users started tweeting with this hashtag. Over 60,000 tweets with this hashtag had been posted by the time of writing this article.

The trend prompted many to question why #RIPActorVijay was trending, while it also created a sense of panic among many fans of the Bigil star. A large number of the tweets with this hashtag were in support of Thala Ajith, indicating that this could be a result of the rivalry between fandoms of Ajith and Vijay, two of the most popular stars in Tamil cinema.

It is not clear which group of fans started it as some claimed that the trend began because Vijay's fans started tweeting against the release of Ajith's next film, Nerkonda Paarvai, on August 8. Fans of the actors have always compared their stardom and a competition of sorts has begun between the two groups of crazed followers, each dedicated to proving that the star they love is the bigger one.

Twitter wars between the two fandoms is not new. Fans of Vijay had trolled Ajith some years back for getting inked on the wrong finger after casting his vote. It is said that Thala and Thalapathy fans don't like to take the names of Ajith and Vijay in the same breath. The box office performances of their films are always compared.

In a poll conducted by India Today last year, Vijay emerged as the most popular Tamil star, but not before facing a tough competition from fans of Ajith, who ensured that there was a very small gap in the percentage of supporters of the two stars.

Not everyone supported Monday's trend of #RIPActorVijay though. While many Twitter users condemned it, some appealed to both the stars to ask their fans to stop slandering each other's names. One user posted, "What Tamil Cinema Extremists don't understand is entire country is watching this Twitter hatred between fans. It’s high time Actors should take initiative and advice the youngsters to stop this negativity."

Many Thala Ajith fans also appealed to fellow followers of the star to stop the trend as it only reflected poorly on them.

The fan fervour for many South cinema stars is legendary. Stars like Rajinikanth inspire a rare dedication in people that's probably unheard of in cinema-going audiences anywhere else in the world. But a hashtag wishing death upon an actor in order to prove one person's supremacy is not just in bad taste, it also shows the shameful lack of sensitivity among a section of Internet users which could lead to a bizarre trend such as this.

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