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Yogi Government at 100 days: Brisk beginning, but miles to go

Yogi, however, needs to do much more to satisfy high aspirations that the BJP had raised, making more than 200 promises in the “Sankalp Patra 2017” brought out in UP polls 2017.

lucknow Updated: Jun 27, 2017 23:07 IST
Umesh Raghuvanshi
Umesh Raghuvanshi
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Yogi Government at 100 days,Sankalp Patra 2017,Yogi Government
The Yogi government appears to be looking for directions to take the state further on the path of development.(Subhankar Chakraborty/HT PHOTO)

Well begun is half done, they say. Chief minister Yogi Adityanath too had made a good beginning. As he delves deeper into governance to have a controlling grip on the state administration, major challenges stare him in the face.

Yogi has been working almost round the clock, starting his day early and working till late night, often up to 1.30 or 2 AM. He works hands on taking personal interest in the nitty-gritty of the administration in his bid to make it more efficient, bring about a perceptible improvement in law and order situation and mobilise additional resources to fund commitments and development.

Yogi, however, needs to do much more to satisfy high aspirations that the BJP had raised, making more than 200 promises in the “Sankalp Patra 2017” brought out in UP polls 2017.

Yogi, who calls him an ‘outsider’ for not having any administrative experience, had made a high profile beginning getting two senior party leaders to assist him as deputy chief ministers. As the monk-turned-politician and BJP MP began learning the art of governance, his government moved ahead at a faster pace fulfilling the BJP’s major promise of crop loan waiver at the first meeting of state cabinet held here on April 4, 2017.

After 100 days of making a fast paced start, Yogi government appears to be looking for directions to take the state further on the path of development. “Yes, Yogi government had begun work at a faster pace though the chief minister calls himself an ‘outsider’ for not having any administrative experience. His government faces major challenges needing Rs 36,000 crore for crop loan waiver, Rs 30,000 crore to clear arrears to employees following implementation of 7th pay commission recommendations by SP government and a large chunk of additional funds for development,” said a senior officer.

The chief minister had set out a 100 day agenda for every department of his government. He had asked the departments to bring out a white paper to show their performance in the past five years along with their future plans. He has met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and central ministers and discussed with them the issues of funding for centrally sponsored schemes and additional central assistance etc. His challenges are no more only on administrative, law and order and financial fronts. He faces a daunting task ahead of striking a balance between his duties as the state’s chief minister and as a saffron-clad Hindutva leader.

As Mahant of Gorakhnath temple, Yogi has developed the image of a Hindutva hardliner. His actions like pruning the list of public holidays have projected him as a sincere chief minister. But questions are often being raised about his sincerity when he tries to tread a path from which his predecessors had stayed away. His visit to the make-shift Ram temple in Ayodhya at the disputed site, his statements on Ram temple issue, his decision not to host Roza Iftar at the chief minister’s house and skip roza iftar at Raj Bhawan are some examples.

Moreover, Yogi has also tried to take the most contentious issues head on, be it setting up of anti-Romeo squads, shutting down illegal meat shops or handling of cow-vigilantism and triple talaq issue. The Yogi government has dealt with all such issues in the CM’s own way, unmindful of the controversies being created on the political horizons and projections being made of him being more of a Hindutva leader than of a sincere chief minister.

“The Yogi government now needs to shift focus from controversies to development, list priorities and set an agenda for the year,” said an officer. His government’s lackadaisical approach in dealing with caste clashes that broke out in Saharanpur also raised serious questions about his government’s handling of law and order issues. As caste violence continued unchecked for sometime, leaders of major political parties, including BSP chief Mayawati and Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi, rushed to Saharanpur to reach out to the downtrodden classes that they said were being targeted during the Yogi raj.

As BJP begins preparations for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Yogi will have to keep in mind that his government’s performance will come for a close scrutiny of the people much earlier - even in by-elections that he and his deputy chief ministers may like to contest to become members of the state assembly. The Chief minister and his deputy chief ministers have to become members of the state assembly within six months from installation of his government on March 19. But they also have an easier option of going to the Vidhan Parishad instead of contesting a by-poll for the state assembly. Will they choose the easier option or contest a by-poll for the lower house? This is the million dollar question doing the rounds in corridors of power here as the Yogi government completes 100 days in office on Tuesday.

First Published: Jun 27, 2017 16:47 IST