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'Yogiji's elevation was unanimous'

March 18, 2017 22:15 IST

'Yogiji insisted to Venkaiah Naiduji that he needs two more strong arms to rule Uttar Pradesh.'

BJP General Secretary O P Mathur feeds Yogi Adityanath a sweet after his election as leader of the BJP legislature party in UP, March 18, 2017, as Deputy Chief Ministers-elect Keshav Prasad Maurya, left, and Dr Dinesh Sharma, right, look on. Photograph: Sandeep Pal

IMAGE: BJP General Secretary O P Mathur feeds Yogi Adityanath a laddoo after his election as leader of the BJP legislature party in UP, March 18, 2017, as Deputy Chief Ministers-elect Keshav Prasad Maurya, left, and Dr Dinesh Sharma, right, look on. Photograph: Sandeep Pal

Two MLAs, who were part of the Bharatiya Janata Party legislature party's proceedings in Lucknow on Saturday, March 18, revealed to Rediff.com's Prasanna D Zore that Yogi Adityanath's name as leader of Uttar Pradesh's elected BJP MLAs was passed unanimously by a voice vote.

Suresh Khanna, the party's senior-most MLA, who was also considered to be in the race for the chief minister's post, proposed the Gorakhpur MP's name.

Ved Prakash Gupta and Brijesh Singh, the BJP MLAs from Ayodhya and Deoband, categorically denied there was any opposition to Adityanath's name or there were other leaders in the fray.

His election, they said, was a smooth affair.

Both MLAs separately confirmed to Rediff.com that Adityanath himself insisted on the need of two more able hands to assist him in governance of a vast state like Uttar Pradesh.

"Yogiji insisted to Union Minister and the BJP's central observer Venkaiah Naiduji that he needs two more strong arms to rule Uttar Pradesh to take Modiji's development call of sabka saath, sabka vikas forward," Singh, the Deoband MLA, said.

"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.

The meeting of the BJP's elected lawmakers "lasted for about 90 minutes, in a very disciplined and festive manner," Gupta said, adding that media reports about the central observers' flip flops on Adityanath's elevation were baseless.

Adityanath (the MP from Gorakhpur), Maurya and Dr Sharma are not elected members of the UP legislature and will have to get elected either to the assembly or the legislative council in the next six months.

Both MLAs reiterated that equal development of Uttar Pradesh and of every single person of the state along with an end to goonda raj and corruption will remain the topmost priority of Adityanath's government.

Prasanna D Zore / Rediff.com