Love him or hate him, Yogi Adityanath
is what the democratic process produced. A five-term Lok Sabha MP, BJP leader Yogi Adityanath, who was sworn-in as Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh on Sunday, has often been quoted as a symbol of communal strife and intolerance by the Opposition. He is hailed as a fiery Hindutva mascot by his supporters.
Yogi Adityanath's reputation of being controversy's favourite child, is an attribute Prime Minister Narendra Modi
and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President Amit Shah can relate to personally, hence, the decision to select him for Uttar Pradesh (or in Modi's words - 'Uttam Pradesh') seems to fit.
There could be innumerable reasons for PM Modi
selecting the priest-turned-politician Adityanath for Uttar Pradesh:
remains enormously popular among his supporters. A five-time Member of Parliament of Lok Sabha from Gorakhpur in eastern Uttar Pradesh, Adityanath was first elected in 1998 at the age of 26 and has never lost an election.
"The public is deeply attached to my name, to my thought process, to me," said Adityanath in an interview soon after his durbar, "The public wants their elected representative to be in touch with them."
Yogiji is an extremely down to earth person, said Ashutosh Pandey, a resident of Basti district that is around 100 kms from Adityanath's constituency. Speaking to Business Standard, Ashutosh, 26, said that Yogi Adityanath
is popular amongst the youth because of his simplicity and down to earth nature.
"I have personally seen him at work. Be it schools or hospitals, he has made them all for the poor", he said.
Another woman from Gorakhpur constituency said I have received my education from Maharana Pratap Girls Inter College, a school run by Yogi Adityanath.
During my time the school lacked proper administration, said Renuka Jha, 28. However, now the school has thousands of students and has improved its ranking.
Back in 2006 and 2007, I remember how the staff and administrators would panic the moment they were informed of Yogiji's visit. He was a disciplinarian and wanted girls to get the finest education, she said.
Long before the BJP had sounded the poll bugle in Uttar Pradesh, the party carried out a survey in 2016 to figure out who would be a good choice for the party's chief ministerial candidate. Yogi Adityanath's name was among those who seemed to have the popular support. However, by then the party was a bit reluctant owing to Adityanath's controversial image.
These surveys, and Rajnath Singh’s unwillingness to come back to UP administration had made Yogi a strong CM post contender much before UP’s voters delivered a massive verdict for BJP.
2. Unifying caste factor
Soon after Yogi Adityanath's name was announced for UP's top most post, Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu said, "The mandate is against caste politics.
During assembly poll campaigns, while BSP chief championed dalit rights and SP-Congress alliance united to defeat 'communal force' of the BJP, voters gave a triumphant mandate to PM Modi-led BJP for his 'no-caste based, pro-development' campaign.
According to a report based in The Economics Times, Yogi Adityanath
clad in his trademark saffron-coloured robe is a 'sanyasi' and hence above caste. "The Gorakhnath peeth has followers largely from backward castes, especially Yadavs…his appeal among backward caste groups is immense,” said a BJP leader.
3. For the 'Greater good'
If you are a Harry Potter fan, then you are likely to understand this term even better. Rather than chasing the minority stake holders, Prime Minister Narendra Modi
decided to work for the larger chunk of the state that is formed by the enormous Hindu majority.
is expected to give a push to BJP's Hindutva-wrapped agenda of development with the emergence of a separate powerbase for the party in eastern UP. Shamshaan-kabristaan, triple talaq, Ram Mandir, "Hindu exodus" and the issue of slaughterhouses were all raked up by the Yogi with the sole intent of vote polarisation.
4. Good communication skills pave way to success
Who understands the power of excellent communication skills than Prime Minister Narendra Modi?
Modi himself has used communication skills to rise through the ranks.
Adityanath too is a powerful orator, like PM Modi.
He known for his powerful oratory, is known for his provocative speeches and mass following across the state and never shies away from making controversial remarks, be it about Islam or Pakistan. His aggressive words have been the forefront in keeping the communal politics
alive in the country.
However, Adityanath's speeches in parliament that have ranged from complaining about steps that the government needs to take to check deaths from brain fever to educational facilities also reflect another side to his politics
Possibly, the BJP had sniffed an opportunity in him and wanted to utilise his potential to polarise votes. Yogi will have to play a crucial role in setting the stage for 2019 and the entire party would be banking heavily on him. According to Dailyo formula of polarisation worked wonders for the BJP in UP this time. Possibly, the central leadership of the BJP knows well that the hardliner approach which worked wonders for the party in UP will also work wonders in 2019 and that is the reason why Adityanath has been entrusted the responsibility of managing UP.
Modi is banking on regional satraps like Adityanath.