Yogi, a fiery Hindutva mascot
|Source: The Hitavada Date: 19 Mar 2017 09:10:41|
A FIVE-term Lok Sabha MP, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Yogi Adityanath is a fiery Hindutva mascot with a reputation of being controversy’s favourite child.
Named as Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh on Saturday, 44-year-old Adityanath, a priest-turned-politician, is known for his provocative speeches and mass following and never shies away from controversial remarks, be it about Islam or Pakistan.
Clad in his trademark saffron robe, Aditayanth, a Gorakhpur MP, has been seeking greater power and is expected to give a push to BJP’s Hindutva agenda of development with the emergence of a separate powerbase in eastern UP. Born Ajay Singh, the diminutive shaven headed politician is known for his powerful oratory.
Adityanath, who is a strong votary of construction of a Ram temple at Ayodhya, drove BJP’s Hindutva campaign in eastern UP in the Assembly polls in the politically crucial State where it won 3/4th majority.
Adityanath has rebelled against his party on several occasions, but because of the sway he holds over the ‘Hindu’ voters, the BJP apparently could not ignore his leadership qualities.”
He floated Hindu Yuva Vahini in 2002. Ever since, the HYV has been largely instrumental in his meteoric rise - from a student leader to five-time MP.
Right from comparing Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan to Pakistani terrorist Hafiz Saeed during the intolerance debate to asking people to leave India if they don’t practice Surya Namaskar, the Yogi has been at the centre of controversies.
Playing the religious card, the firebrand leader had said that controversial issues like ‘love jihad’ and ‘Kairana Hindu’ exodus had always been on his party’s agenda. He had also said that the hurdles in construction of a grand Ram temple will be gradually removed.
Born on June 5 1972, Adityanath was the youngest member of the 12th Lok Sabha at 26. He was elected MP from Gorakhpur in 1998, 1999, 2004, 2009 and 2014.
In 2005, Adityanath allegedly led a purification drive which involved the conversion of Christians to Hinduism. In one such instance, 1,800 Christians were reportedly converted to Hinduism in the town of Etah.