Yogi elected BJP legislature party leader, stakes claim on eve of swearing-in - Hindustan Times

Yogi elected BJP legislature party leader, stakes claim on eve of swearing-in

Mar 25, 2022 01:56 AM IST

Yogi Adityanath praises PM Modi, Amit Shah for their leadership, says his government will have to set newer benchmarks

Chief minister-designate Yogi Adityanath met governor Anandiben Patel and staked claim to form the government after he was unanimously elected legislature party leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday, paving the way for his formal swearing-in as the 33rd chief minister of Uttar Pradesh at the Atal Bihari Vajpayee stadium at 4pm in Lucknow on Friday.

Yogi Adityanath calls on Uttar Pradesh governor Anandiben Patel after he was elected leader of the BJP legislative party. (HT Photo)
Yogi Adityanath calls on Uttar Pradesh governor Anandiben Patel after he was elected leader of the BJP legislative party. (HT Photo)

Before Adityanath staked claim, the leaders of BJP and its allies met the governor with the information about Adityanath being elected leader.

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Now, all eyes are on the tea party that Yogi Adityanath will host on Friday morning for those newly elected lawmakers, who could be part of his second government, at his official residence at 5- Kalidas Marg. The suspense over deputy chief ministers and the speaker in the 18th UP assembly is yet to be officially cleared.

The BJP legislature party meeting took place in the presence of BJP’s central observers — Union home minister Amit Shah and former Jharkhand chief minister Raghubar Das.

All the 255 elected lawmakers of the BJP as well as the 18 MLAs who had won on the symbol of BJP’s pre-poll allies Apna Dal (Sonelal) and Nishad party, backed Adityanath’s name proposed by senior most leader of BJP legislative party Suresh Khanna, who has won the Shahjahanpur assembly seat for the ninth time.

Senior party leaders Surya Pratap Shahi, Baby Rani Maurya, Ram Naresh Agnihotri, Sushil Shakya and Nand Gopal Gupta ‘Nandi’seconded the proposal.

The entire Lok Bhavan auditorium burst into applause as lawmakers welcomed the announcement of Adityanath being declared the leader.

“Yogiji himself was quite emotional on the occasion,” a BJP lawmaker said.

Suresh Khanna, on being asked about the suspense over deputy chief ministers’ posts and that of the speaker, said, “The chief minister would shortly clear everything as he has all the answers.”

In his speech, after Adityanath was named the legislature party leader, Amit Shah described Yogi as a leader with “vyapak drishtikon (impressive vision)”. He credited Yogi with implementing the pro-poor policies and programmes of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“Yogiji was formally elected as the legislature party leader today, but recall that we had way back announced that Yogiji will be the party’s CM candidate,” Shah said. He advised the party MLAs to remember that the party was supreme and that the next five years of BJP government 2.0 would be devoted to restoring state’s “lost glory” and to making it the country’s “number one economy.”

Soon after being elected BJP legislative party leader, Adityanath praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union home minister Amit Shah for their guidance and leadership, which he said, was responsible for the party’s spectacular return to power in the most populous state. He also said that in 2017, when voted to power, the party’s government had the task of steering the state from “kushashan” (bad governance) to “sushasasan (good governance)”.

“Now, we will have to compete with ourselves to set newer benchmarks in improving the good governance model even further,” Adityanath said. He recalled how when he was picked as chief minister in 2017, he had no prior experience of governance and showered praise on party leadership for support.

“In 2017, when the party reposed its trust in me for being the chief minister, I was not even an MLA then, just an ordinary MP. I had no administrative experience. I had not been a part of any government set-up till then. But the Prime Minister and the home minister guided me like a guardian and because of whom we managed to ensure implementation of reforms, investment, good governance,” Adityanath said.

“As an MP, one is limited to one’s constituency. But, discharging one’s role as chief minister of a state like UP is a big responsibility. And fulfilling that responsibility became possible due to this support and guardianship of these top leaders,” Adityanath said on the occasion.

“For the first time, people got to know that the house of the poor can be built, that the cash benefits of various government schemes could be credited directly into the account of the intended poor beneficiaries, for the first time people got to know that festivals could be celebrated peacefully, that the state could be riot-free and that the poor could get free double ration,” Adityanath said about his first tenure. He hit out at the opposition for launching what he described as a “misinformation” campaign during the 2022 UP polls.

“People rejected all misinformation campaign as they had trust in Modi and believed in the mantra of ‘Modi hai to mumkin hai (With Modi, it is possible),” he added.

“The free double ration both by the central government and by the state, was a dream earlier in this state which had witnessed food scams in the past,” he said.

Adityanath will take oath of office and secrecy at a star-studded ceremony that is expected be witnessed by PM Modi, several chief ministers and deputy chief ministers of BJP as well as those of its allies on Friday. Several top industrialists, film actors, beneficiaries of various government schemes, seers from nearly all the religious hotspots of the state and beyond, would be present for the swearing-in.

When he takes oath on Friday, Adityanath would become the first chief minister in UP to assume office for a second term after serving a full, five-year tenure.

Adityanath, then a five-term MP from Gorakhpur, had become a member of the upper house of the state legislature (MLC), the Vidhan Parishad on September 8, 2017, in keeping with the constitutional norms that mandate that a chief minister or minister have to be members of the either house of the state legislature. Adityanath has already resigned as an MLC as he has been elected MLA from Gorakhpur (Urban) assembly constituency by over one lakh votes.

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    Manish Chandra Pandey is a Lucknow-based Senior Assistant Editor with Hindustan Times’ political bureau in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh. Along with political reporting, he loves to write offbeat/human interest stories that people connect with. Manish also covers departments. He feels he has a lot to learn not just from veterans, but also from newcomers who make him realise that there is so much to unlearn.

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