Tuesday, September 19, 2017
NEW DELHI: Criticism accompanied the news that Yogi Adityanath will be the next Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, as several people pointed out that charges against the BJP leader include attempt to murder, criminal intimidation, rioting, defiling a place of worship, destroying a landmark AND promoting enmity between groups. Prime Minister Modi, many said, had capitulated on the promises of ‘vikas’, with Adityanath’s appointment being seen as a victory of communal and polarised politics.
Most recently, Yogi Adityanath praised Donald Trump’s immigration ban -- a move that was widely dubbed as a “Muslim” ban because it banned travel to US from seven predominantly Muslim countries. "Similar action is needed to contain terror activities in this country," Adityanath had said, adding that “Trump's victory has given politics a new direction, a new flow. You must have seen the decision he has taken. He named Narendra Modi his political icon... In 2013, Putin was questioned over Muslims being given special rights. The issue was discussed in their Parliament... He stood up and said Russia cannot give anyone special rights as they are a minority. Whoever lives in Russia will abide by Russian laws and whoever doesn't follow, should go where they like Shariat law.”
The soon to be CM had once compared actor Shahrukh Khan to terrorist Hafiz Saeed, saying that "Shah Rukh Khan should remember that if a huge mass in society would boycott his films, he will also have to wander on streets like a normal Muslim....I am saying these people are speaking in a terrorist language. I think there is no difference between the language of Shah Rukh Khan and Hafiz Saeed.”
Yogi Adityanath, who serves as head priest of the Gorakhnath temple in Gorakhpur, said publicly that if given a chance, he will put Ganesh murtis in all mosques across the country.
Another time he compared Kashmir to western UP. "On January 19, 1990, Hindus had to migrate collectively from Kashmir. A massacre took place, the honour of mothers and sisters were openly tramped upon. If we have seen a sight similar to this anywhere, it was either in Bengal or western UP. Kairana and Kandhla are examples. Is Kairana not an issue? Is Kashmir not an issue? If this country's majority, Hindus, are tortured, is it not an issue?" he said.
Perhaps, most shocking, however, was a statement made by the Hindutva leader’s followers. At a public rally, one of Yogi Adityanath’s men openly urged the audience to dig out dead bodies of Muslims and rape them. The new UP Chief Minister was sharing the stage; you can watch the video.
Given this context, it’s not surprising that Yogi Adityanath’s appointment has been very controversial. While the part of the commentary on Facebook and Twitter was fearful and critical, many others defended the appointment and rubbished the ‘communal’ charge levelled at the firebrand leader. Fortunately, some humour too made its way:
Agar ab bhi mandir nahin bana to kabhi nahi banega. #YogiAdityanath— Sagar (@sagarcasm) March 18, 2017
Working overtime now: a PR industry recasting Yogi Adityanath as vikaspurush.— Shivam Vij (@DilliDurAst) March 18, 2017
2 yrs from now, Modi ji will be lecturing Adityanath on Rajdharma in a press conference in Muzaffarnagar. #dejavu— Rofl Gandhi (@RoflGandhi_) March 18, 2017
In the end, these comparison of Yogi Adityanath and Hollywood star Vin Diesel won the day:
Yogi Adityanath fought Nizam of Deccan and saved Rajput girl Mastani. But libtard filmmakers would never show this. pic.twitter.com/WhrdsdgsWj— Rofl Gandhi (@RoflGandhi_) January 28, 2017