Lucknow: Two years and four months after Yogi Adityanath was appointed Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, BJP President and Union Home Minister Amit Shah Sunday explained the party’s choice for the top job in the state.
“No one thought Yogi would be Chief Minister. Many people called me, saying ‘Yogi has never even run a municipality, why are you making him CM? It is true, he had not run even a municipality. He was a temple head. People asked me why we were giving him the reins of such a big state. But Prime Minister Narendra Modi and I decided to make him Chief Minister. He is work-oriented and has made up for his lack of experience with his work ethic,” the BJP chief said here.
The name of Adityanath, who is also the head priest of the Gorakhnath temple in Gorakhpur, began to do the rounds soon after the results of the UP Assembly election, which the BJP won handsomely, were announced in March 2017.
Sources said the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh, had vetoed the party’s top choice for Chief Minister — then Union Telecom Minister Manoj Sinha. Sources said Adityanath was chosen as he was assessed to be the most popular leader among the cadre.
The selection of the priest-politician, seen as a right-wing poster boy, as Chief Minister in the huge, politically crucial state had baffled many, especially since he did not have any administrative experience.