New Uttar Pradesh chief minister Adityanath “openly requested me for two deputy chief ministers”, said senior BJP leader and Union minister Venkaiah Naidu today. The reason the new UP CM wanted to have two people as his second-in-command is that they “would help him as Uttar Pradesh is a big state”, Naidu said.
“The trio will be a good combination,” he added, about the new UP CM and the two new deputy CM-designates, Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma. All three were named yesterday to their positions by senior BJP leadership and are scheduled to take the oath today at 2:15 pm.”Yogi is an honest man,nobody can raise a finger on his commitment. Also, winning from the same seat five times isn’t a small thing,” Naidu said about Adityanath, who is a five-time Parliamentarian from Gorakhpur in Eastern UP. Adityanath’s family is, of course, ecstatic.
“From the very start he had this aim of serving the people, now that he has become CM I’m really very happy,” said the CM-designate’s father.The BJP kept everyone guessing about whom they will decide on to lead UP after the party won a landslide victory there taking 312 of 403 seats in the UP Assembly elections 2017.”We remained glued to our TV yesterday awaiting the news, later we celebrated and burst crackers on (hearing) the good news,” said Adityanath’s sister.
The BJP deciding on Adityanath is being seen as a sign that the party is already strategizing for the 2019 general elections, analysts believe. A big part of that strategy is the consolidation of the Hindu vote around the idea of Hindu nationalism. And Adityanath, often regarded as a hardline religious leader, is seen as a charismatic figure with a tough image on issues like Pakistan and religious conversions. The deputy CMs, sources told, would represent a caste balance and bear some of the administrative load, given that Adityanath might need some time to learn the ropes. Of the two deputy CMs, Maurya represents a key segment of the OBC consolidation, while Lucknow mayor Sharma is a Brahmin.