Controversial Hindu priest chosen as Uttar Pradesh chief minister

Andrew Cummings
March 19, 2017

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party president Amit Shah were also present in the ceremony.

The Prime Minister's insistence on development being the only aim of the Adityanath government appears to be an attempt to allay apprehensions that some quarters may have over the hardline Hindutva mascot taking over as the Chief Minister.

Adityanath's appointment to lead Uttar Pradesh was denounced by opposition party members. "Allowing Hindutva hardliners to helm a major state is a costly mistake", said journalist Malini Parthasarathy on Twitter as #YogiAdityanath became a top-trending topic in India.

Outgoing chief minister Akhilesh Yadav and his father and Samajwadi Party founder Mulayam Singh Yadav also attended the function.The Adityanath government has a total of 24 cabinet ministers, including two deputy CMs, nine MoS (independent charge) and 13 ministers of state.

Bharatiya Janata Party leader Yogi Adityanath, center, is greeted after his election as chief minister of Uttar Pradesh during the party lawmakers' meeting Saturday in Lucknow, India.

"He has made provocative statements in the past and the question is whether he continues that style of politics as chief minister because the new job entails new responsibilities", he said. "We will work together for the development of all without any bias against community and religion".

Swapan Dasgupta, a right-leaning commentator, said Adityanath was associated with "a certain brand of militant Hindu assertion" but that he was also "one of the most charismatic and captivating politicians in Uttar Pradesh".

"I have enormous confidence that this new team will leave no stone unturned in making UP Uttam Pradesh", tweeted Modi, a star attraction at the Sunday event.

"After consultation with other senior leaders and elected legislators Venkaiah Naiduji announced the names of (state BJP President Keshav Prasad) Mauryaji and (Lucknow Mayor Dr Dinesh) Sharmaji", Singh said.

"PM @narendramodi says development & growth is his primary agenda".

The sole Muslim in the ministry is former cricketer Mohsin Raza, who is not a member of the assembly as the BJP did not field any Muslim in the election.

Other reports by iNewsToday