Snehan (born Sivaselvam) is an Indian poet, politician and lyricist who has worked in the Tamil film industry. After serving as an assistant to poet Vairamuthu, he began working as a lyricist in the film Putham Pudhiya Poove and has written lyrics for more than 2500 songs. Snehan has since also appeared in films as an actor and made his acting debut with Yogi (2009).[1]

Pudhukariyapatti, Tamil Nadu, India
OccupationPoet, lyricist, actor, playback singer, politician

Early life

Snehan was born in a small village Pudhukariyapatti, near Sengipatti in the Thanjavur district as Sivaselvam, the youngest of eight sons into an agricultural family.[2] He later changed his name to Snehan because, which translates literally to "the man of love", as he felt Sivaselvam was too common.[3]

Cinema career

Moving to Chennai, Snehan first worked as a protégé to noted poet and lyricist Vairamuthu for five years. Later, he worked as the editor of Ilanthendral, a monthly magazine for three years. At the book release function of his works Mudhal Adhyayam and Innum Pengal Azhaga Irukkirargal in 1995, he was asked by K. Balachander to write songs in films and he got the chance from music director S. A. Rajkumar to write lyrics for the film Putham Puthu Poove, which eventually did not have a theatrical release. He has since written more than 2500 songs for more than 500 films, working with various directors and music composers in the Tamil film industry.[2] He first garnered acclaim for his songs in the art film Penngal (2000) and the dubbed film Kandein Seethaiyai (2001), before making a breakthrough with his song "Avaravar Vazhkaiyil" from Cheran's family drama Pandavar Bhoomi (2001). Other successful early songs written by Snehan were from the album Dhaya and the dance number "Chumma Chumma" in Charlie Chaplin (2002) which was picturised on Prabhu Deva and Gayathri Raghuram.[2] He received further acclaim in the early 2000s with his collaboration with Ameer and Yuvan Shankar Raja in Mounam Pesiyadhe (2002) and then for the "Kalyanamdhaan Kattikittu" song in Harris Jayaraj's album Saamy (2003).[2] His work in Ameer's Raam (2005) also won critical acclaim, with the song "Aarariro" earning him plaudits.[3] He later released more books including Ippadium Irukkalam and Puthagam.[3]

He then turned actor for the film action drama Yogi, for which he has also written all the lyrics, as his friend and lead actor of the film, Ameer Sultan, gave him the opportunity. For the same film, Snehan became a playback singer as well, lending his vocals to a song. Portraying a rustic character named Sadayan, the character was well received by audiences.[4] Following his appearance in Yogi, Snehan chose to pursue a career as an actor and looked for roles where he would play the protagonist.[5] In order to prepare for his stint as an actor, he trained under stunt choreographer Power Pandian to practise action scenes and learnt salsa dancing.[6] His next release, the crime thriller Uyarthiru 420 (2011), saw him appear in the lead role in which his voice was dubbed by Sanjeev opposite Meghana Raj but the film fared poorly at the box office and received negative reviews. In regard to his performance, a critic from Sify wrote, "the chemistry between the lead pair is zero" and added, "though Snehan attempts and succeeds to be stylish in the songs, his wooden face, long hair, patchy makeup and dark glasses in almost every frame is a big let down".[7][8]

In 2013, Snehan began working on a historical film titled Raja Raja Chozhanin Porval directed by R. S. Amudheswar, which would feature music by Ilaiyaraaja. The team began shoot in mid-2013 and planned to bring in actresses Shriya Saran, Sneha and newcomer Naatiya to play leading female roles opposite Snehan. However, the film was subsequently shelved after it ran into financial trouble.[9] In 2015, he then started work on a film titled Bommi Veeran directed by Ramesh Maharajan, where he would portray a kattaikkuttu dancer. Like his previous film, the film ran intro financial trouble and the shoot remains on hold.[10]

In 2017, Snehan took part in the Tamil reality television show Bigg Boss hosted by Kamal Haasan and finished as the runner-up.[11] During the show, Snehan announced a proposal to build a library in interior Tamil Nadu with the prize money, if the audience were to vote for him to win the show. Despite his failure to win the show, he began work on the library in Tanjore during November 2017.[12] He later announced that he would appear in the lead role in a film titled Panangkaattu Nari opposite his fellow Bigg Boss contestant, Oviya, but the project did not develop.[13]

Political career

On 21 February 2018, during the launch of Kamal Haasan's political party Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM) at the Othakadai Grounds in Madurai, Snehan officially joined the party and became the party's executive committee member. Snehan made his speech and said, "The crowd in front of me has gathered only for the love of Kamal Haasan. This is the real, Thaanaa Serndha Koottam. Kamal sir, will be the best friend for every citizen in the State. Yaadhum Oorey, Yaavarum Keleer. Let us spread love to all with the fullest happiness".[14][15] Snehan wrote the lyrics of the party's anthem "Idhu Nammavar Padai".[16] At the 2019 Indian general election in Tamil Nadu, he is contesting from Sivaganga as a candidate of the Makkal Needhi Maiam.[17]

Indian general elections (Lok Sabha)

Snehan electoral performances in the Indian general elections (Lok Sabha).

Year Election Party PC Name Result Votes gained Vote %
2019 17th Lok Sabha Makkal Needhi Maiam   Sivaganga 5th place 22,951 2.1


In 2005, Snehan was highly critical of female lyricists such as Kutti Revathi, Sukirtarani, Salma, Malathi Maithri and Uma Maheswari for writing about their bodies and sexuality and called for the poets to be "burnt".[18]

In 2011, Snehan had a police complaint filed against him and faced court action following allegations that he had broken the marriage of Prabhakaran and Jamuna, who had worked as the choreographer in Uyarthiru 420 (2011). Prabhakaran accused Snehan of cheating with his wife and abducting their child.[19]


Selected filmography

As lyricist

  • "Avaravar Vaazhkkaiyil Aayiram Aayiram Maatrangal" (Pandavar Boomi)
  • "Thozha Thozha" (Pandavar Boomi)
  • "Adatha Aattamellam" (Mounam Pesiyathe)
  • "Kalyanam Thaan Kattikittu Odipolama" (Saamy)
  • "Poi Solla Intha Manasukku Theriyavillai" (April Maadhathil)
  • "Gnabagam Varuthe" (Autograph)
  • "Manasukkulle Dhaagam Vanthucha" (Autograph)
  • "Ore Oru Piravi" (Perazhagan)
  • "Manmadhane Nee" (Manmadhan)
  • "Boom Boom" (Raam)
  • "Aarariraro" (Raam)
  • "Ore Oru Oorukkulle Ore Oru Appa Amma" (Thavamai Thavamirunthu)
  • "Ariyadha Vayasu" (Paruthiveeran)
  • "Ayyayyo" (Paruthiveeran)
  • "Oororam Puliyamaram" (Paruthiveeran)
  • "Appa Amma Vilayattu" (Padikkathavan)
  • "Maambalamaam Maambalam" (Pokkiri)
  • "Hey Salaa" (Aegan)
  • "Odum Varaiyil" (Aegan)
  • "Deemthanakka Thillaanaa" (Villu)
  • "Yaarodu Yaro" (Yogi)
  • "Meendum Pallikku Pogalam" (Pallikkoodam)
  • "Yathe Yathe" (Aadukalam)
  • "Ayyayo Nenju" (Aadukalam)
  • "Ambalaikkum Pombalaikkum" (Kazhugu)

As Actor



  • Mudhal Adhyayam
  • Innum Pengal Azhaga Irukkirargal
  • Ippadium Irukkalam
  • Puththagam
  • Avaravar Vazhkaiyil


  1. ^ "I could not refuse Ameer's offer: Snehan". 15 March 2010 – via
  2. ^ a b c d "Snehan – a gift from 'Sami'". Retrieved 3 September 2009.
  3. ^ a b c "Behindwoods :Interviews - Snehan".
  4. ^ "Snehan grabs 2 at a time! - Tamil Movie News -".
  5. ^ "Snehan set to become hero - Tamil Movie News -".
  6. ^ "Lyricist Snehan turns hero!".
  7. ^ "Review : (2011)".
  9. ^ Syndicate, India. "Ilaiyaraaja to compose in temple with fans watching".
  10. ^ edkarthick. "Lyricist Snehan plays Kattaikkuttu performer in Bommi Veeran".
  11. ^ "Bigg Boss Tamil Week 11: Snehan disheartened; Vaiyapuri elected leader - NewsX". 7 September 2017.
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^ "The Vulture Culture".
  19. ^ "Snehan's arrest imminent in woman abduction case - KOLLY TALK". 26 November 2011.

External links