Published: Mon, March 20, 2017
Business | By Sandy Mccarthy

Yogi Adityanath as UP CM: Uma Bharti expresses delight

Yogi Adityanath as UP CM: Uma Bharti expresses delight

Suspense continued about BJP's chief ministerial pick in Uttar Pradesh as newly-elected MLAs are all set to meet here today to elect the leader, with Union Minister Manoj Sinha among the frontrunners. Yogi Adityanath, a five-time Lok Sabha MP from Gorakhpur, is an upper caste Rajput. However, Bundelkhand region, which was swept by the BJP winning 19 seats, did not get a fair deal as one MLA has been inducted in the Council of Ministers while Lucknow bagged three Cabinet Minister and one Minister of State. After the landslide victory in Uttar Pradesh, there were questions within the party about whether a hardliner should be made the chief minister.

But the elevation of Adityanath, 44, came as a surprise to many observers after an election campaign in which Modi and other BJP figures emphasised economic development over the party's "Hindutva" agenda.

Adityanath, who has been accused by opposition parties of being a divisive political figure, enjoys considerable popularity in the state and is known to make provocative statements, be it about Islam or Pakistan.

Still, many wonder if Mr Adityanath can provide strong governance, strengthen the economy and free the state from corruption.

Yet 10 Vahini members, who were snubbed, contested the election on Shiv Sena tickets against BJP candidates, with Adityanath merely issuing a token warning. Mohsin Raza, who had represented the State in cricket, took the oath on the name of "Ishwar" and not "Allah".

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The balancing act of the party can also be seen in its choice of two deputy CMs - one of them is a backward caste leader, while the other is a Brahmin.

He gave these directions to his ministers at the introductory meeting soon after assuming office, Cabinet Minister Srikant Sharma said. Maurya was elected from the Phulpur constituency, while Sharma is the vice president of BJP and, also in-charge of Gujarat.

Suresh Rana, Upendra Tiwari, Mahendra Singh and Anupama Jaiswal were also handed over the charge of MoS with Independent Charge.

The micro-blogging site is filled with collages of Yogi Adityanath and Vin, calling them as "long lost brothers". The selection of Yogi as Chief Minister has started tongue waging that BJP was out to implement its Hindutava agenda by marginalizing members of minority community.

As a Union Minister of Communication and minister of the state of Railways, Manoj sustains a deliberately low profile but is seen as a honest silent performer.

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