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South Indian films actor Prakash Raj has become a new target of troll over his religion and name change. (Creative Commons)

Is Prakash Raj’s real name Prakash Albert Raj? Check out to know the truth

Prakash Raj, one of the open criticizers of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and RSS has been facing immense hate campaign on social media platforms for the past couple of years. Now, a post is spreading like wildfire on Facebook and Twitter which claims that the actor’s actual name is ‘Prakash Albert Raj’. Some other social media users allege that his real name is ‘Prakash Edward Rai (RAI) and they claim that the actor has changed his name to Prakash Raj to disguise himself as a Hindu.
Recently, Post Card News, a news portal known for allegedly having lenience towards right-wing too claimed that Prakash Raj’s original name is Prakash Edward Rai. In their story, they alleged that Prakash Raj is closely working with Christian missionaries to malign Hindus in the nation.

A postcard News screengrab showing the news story on Prakash Raj

So what is the reality behind Prakash Raj’s name? Is he really Prakash Edward Rai ? Let us check it out.
Prakash Raj was born in Bangalore on March 26, 1965, in a lower-middle-class family. His father’s name was Manjunath Rai, while his mother’s name was Swarnalatha. Prakash Raj was initially named Prakash Rai by his parents.
It was legendary Tamil director K Balachander who gave the surname of ‘Raj’ to Prakash. A report published in the New Indian Express reveals that Balachander had changed his surname to Raj to disguise his Kannadiga identity.
After acting in some Kannada movies, Prakash made his debut in Tamil through the 1994 movie ‘Duet’ directed by K Balachander. During those times, the tension between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka over the Cauvery water issue was burning like a volcano. As Prakash’s surname ‘Rai’ was easily identifiable as a Kannadiga, Balachander decided to change it to Raj, and Prakash accepted the suggestion.
“Balachander never looked at my religion or my state. He just wanted someone who can tell his stories. Imagine if he had said, ‘You are a Kannadiga and you cannot act in a Tamil film’, where would I have been? So many moments in our lives are decided by people who do not care where you come from, what religion you come from, what gender you are,” said Prakash Raj in an old interview with the New Indian Express.
Prakash Raj later emerged as a proponent of atheism, and he started his fight to end religious politics. It was after he openly criticised the Narendra Modi government that the actor started facing harsh hate campaigns on social media platforms. Many people claimed that his surname is ‘Albert’, while his actual surname was just ‘Rai’.
To make things clear and precise, Prakash Raj was born Prakash Rai, as shown by global database IMDB and not ‘Prakash Edward Rai’ or ‘Prakash Albert Raj’.

IMDB Biography of actor Prakash Raj shows that he was born Prakash Rai. (IMDB screen grab)

About Nirmal Narayan

Nirmal Narayan, Principal correspondent, has more than 9 years of experience working with many online content and news websites. With his keen eye on social media and false reports and videos, he is adept at pointing out anomalies instantly and never wastes a minute unless he cracks the story in and out. With his fluency in English and Malayalam, he is also the key contributor to our Malayalam edition 'Vasthavamenthu.com'. He can be reached at Email: malayalam@digiteye.in

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