Vowing to work for the all-round development of Uttar Pradesh, new Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has said that his priorities will be to rid the state of corruption and communal riots.
“We will work to make the state free of corruption, rowdyism and hooliganism. We will present a developmental model which will prevent distress migration of youths for jobs,” he said on Tuesday.
Adityanath, a long-time BJP member of Parliament from Gorakhpur, told the Lok Sabha that he will curb anti-social elements in the country’s most populous state.
The leader also took a dig at the Samajwadi Party-Congress alliance in his state, saying he came between the two to defeat it in the just-concluded assembly elections.
Adityanath, who took oath on Sunday, was in Delhi on Tuesday to meet President Pranab Mukherjee, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, several union ministers and BJP leaders.
He claimed credit for bringing about changes in Gorakhpur which, he said, did not enjoy a positive image among the people earlier.
Now, he said, no trader in Gorakhpur pays “goonda tax”, the town does not witness abductions and there are no communal riots in eastern Uttar Pradesh.
“We will be successful in bringing the same situation in Uttar Pradesh.”
“There were 403 riots in Uttar Pradesh, but not one in eastern UP. We will be successful in creating the same situation in Uttar Pradesh.”
Referring to the days he became MP for the first time, Adityanath said he had gone to meet a minister who recalled having been at a rally in Gorakhpur where bombs were thrown.
“In last 15 years, what used to be said for Gorakhpur, was said for the whole of Uttar Pradesh.”
Taking a dig at the SP-Congress alliance, Adityanath said: “I am one year younger to Rahul Gandhi and a year older to Akhilesh Yadav. Since I came between them, it was the reason for the alliance’s defeat in Uttar Pradesh.”
The BJP won 312 of the 403 assembly seats in the February-March elections.
The Chief Minister also accused the earlier UP government of not utilising most funds allocated by the central government and vowed to follow Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s slogan of ‘sabka saath-sabka vikas’.
Thanking Modi for giving him a chance to serve the state, Adityanath said he will try to lead its growth story. Adityanath met Modi and discussed several issues related to the state.
The hour-long meeting was held at Parliament House. The precise details of what they discussed were not known, but informed sources said that both discussed development-related issues.
After the meeting, Yogi Adityanath didn’t speak to the media and left for Home Minister Rajnath Singh’s residence. Earlier, he called on Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
In his meeting with Rajnath Singh, Adityanath discussed law and order in Uttar Pradesh and sought his support. Rajnath is a former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and presently MP from Lucknow.
Adityanath also met President Pranab Mukherjee, BJP President Amit Shah, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and party veteran L.K. Advani.
During his meeting with Shah, Adityanath is learnt to have discussed portfolio distribution in his ministry.
BJP sources said Adityanath wants to keep the Home Department while his deputy Keshav Prasad Maurya is trying to get the portfolio. They said Adityanath is likely to announce the portfolios by Thursday.
Besides two Deputy Chief Ministers, his council of ministers has 22 other Cabinet ministers, nine Ministers of State with independent charge and 13 Ministers of State.
Adityanath said the verdict in Uttar Pradesh was a slap in the face of those who questioned the welfare policies and development agenda of the Narendra Modi government.
“We will bring a new model of development in Uttar Pradesh under the leadership of our Prime Minister Narendra Modi. We are committed to development of every caste, every class and every citizen,” he said.
Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, responding to Adiyanth’s remarks, wished him luck and said: “You have the chair now, maintain its dignity and go ahead.”
He has to become a member of the state legislature in the next six months. Lok Sabha officials said he had not resigned his membership of the House. (IANS)