Anti-Muslim leader's appointment as new Uttar Pradesh chief raises questions

Posted March 21, 2017

"Hinduism is not India", he told the Hindustan Times.

"Hindus will rule, so you had better behave".

After assuming the office, the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Monday suspended the services of advisers, vice-chairmen and chairmen appointed in the previous government led by the Samajwadi Party. The BJP won the biggest majority for any party in the state legislature in 40 years.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who flew in here to attend the swearing-in ceremony, also had some reassuring words.

The day after the results from UP and a handful of smaller states were announced, Modi said a "new India is on the horizon" and reiterated his commitment to economic development. It is disturbing that, no political party in India is seems to be very critical to these developments, taking place in the Indian political setup and Indian society.

The BJP fielded no candidates from the Muslim minority that makes up 19 percent of the population in a state with a population of 220 million that is home to 15 percent of the world's poor.

Adityanath is one of the most polarizing figures in Uttar Pradesh politics.

He has also called Mother Teresa "part of the conspiracy to Christianise India" and often warns his followers that Muslims are conducting "love jihad" - a discredited but potent idea that Muslim men deliberately woo Hindu women for conversion and marriage. "He has declared "Lok Kalyan Sankalp Patra" of the BJP manifesto is his agenda", Naidu wrote on Facebook.

"When they fail to create jobs, revive the economy or lift investment, they are going to fall back more on the majoritarian agenda". He warned the officials if they fail to take action in communal flare-ups in the state.

A five-time parliamentarian from the Uttar Pradesh constituency of Gorakhpur, Mr Adityanath has a strong base of power in the east of the state. On lines of Swachh Bharat Mission of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the chief minister said that, "UP lags behind other states as far as cleanliness is concerned".

On Saturday, however, Mr. Adityanath had been brought to Delhi on a special chartered flight to meet BJP chief Amit Shah, after which his name came into contention.

"In past 15 years, UP lacked in race of development as previous governments indulged in corruption, nepotism and failed on the law and order front due to which people were affected", he said.

"CM has requested cabinet ministers to refrain from making unnecessary statements which can hurt someone's sentiment", Uttar Pradesh minister Shrikant Sharma told the media here. He was reprimanded by election authorities for calling on Hindus to convert 100 Muslims for every Hindu that adopted Islam.