Yogi Adityanath expected to contest assembly elections from Ayodhya
People familiar with the situation said on Wednesday that Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath is likely to run in the state’s February-March assembly elections from Ayodhya, as the process for ticket distribution within the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) began.
A Supreme Court verdict has cleared the way for the Ram Temple in Ayodhya to be built in 2019, years after the BJP’s drive for its construction catapulted it to prominence in the 1990s.
On Tuesday, the BJP’s Uttar Pradesh core committee, which includes Adityanath, met in New Delhi to examine probable candidates for the upcoming assembly elections. According to a party official, the gathering discussed Adityanath’s candidacy for the Ayodhya seat.
From February 10 to March 7, elections for the 403-member state assembly will take place in seven rounds, with results released on March 10.
The BJP’s election committee will make the final decision on ticket allocation after reviewing the proposals from the state unit. Because of their sacred significance to Hindus, there is a strong demand for Adityanath to be fielded from Ayodhya or Mathura.
A second party official claimed that fielding Adityanath, a five-term Member of Parliament from Gorakhpur, in Ayodhya would send a message that combined Hindutva with development.
Harnath Yadav, a BJP lawmaker, has already written to BJP president JP Nadda, urging him to consider Adityanath as a candidate from Mathura. “While Gorakhpur, which is the seat of the Gorakhnath Math (of which the Yogi is the head) is identified with the chief minister), the religious significance of Ayodhya is far greater. If he contests from there, it will be a clear and strong message that the party and the chief minister are not compromising on their core ideological beliefs for political purposes,” a third functionary added.
On the ground, BJP officials say that the state government’s performance and the federal government’s social programmes will help the party keep power in Uttar Pradesh with 270 to 290 seats.
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