Yogi Adityanath would have never thought that he would get the same treatment by media, liberal and Left commentators, as it was given to the US President Donald Trump. But then, fates of some politicians are interlinked sometimes. Despite winning the US Presidential election with a thumping majority, Trump faced, and is facing even now, an unparalleled media and liberal hostility. Much of this hostility is because of Trump’s past statements and some controversial policy decisions like building a wall across US-Mexico border and banning immigrants from a few Muslim countries.
In India, Yogi is having a Trump-like moment. He is being derided by liberal political commentators for his controversial past. One doesn’t yet know if Yogi will take some controversial decisions like Trump in Uttar Pradesh. With a brute majority of 325 MLAs out of 403 in the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly, Yogi can literally take any decision.
Yogi was one of the few politicians in the world who had openly praised Trump for imposing a visa ban on travellers from a few Muslim countries, including Iran and Syria. He had even said that India needed to adopt a similar policy to deal with terrorism.
While addressing an election rally on January 30 in Uttar Pradesh, Yogi had said, “Similar action is needed to contain terror activities in this country.”
As a part of his government’s new measures to keep “radical Islamic terrorists” out of the US, Trump had ordered “extreme vetting” of people entering the country from seven Muslim-majority countries. He had also banned the entry of Syrian refugees until further notice. The move was, however, not only criticised by media and leaders across the world, it was also challenged in court.
Will Yogi will do something similar to Trump in Uttar pradesh? With his elevation as the Uttar pradesh Chief Minister, this is a genuine worry among people, especially Muslims, of the state. However, India is not the US and Yogi may agree with Trump policies but can’t afford to become one.
Yogi’s biggest challenge is to carry forward the much professed “sabka saath, sabka vikaas” governance agenda of Prime Minister Naredra Modi. The saint-turned-politician would have to not only take on criminals in the state but also the fringe Hindu, as well as Muslim, groups who have the tendency to flare up communal sentiments at regular intervals in past.
Until a few days ago, Yogi was himself among the fringe elements who never shy away from openly speaking against a community. As the CM, Yogi may go soft. But then, there are several Yogis in the state who need to be checked for ensuring development. All of this will not be easy. Yogi may have successfully shunned pleasures to live the life of a monk. But now, he will have to walk on fire to prove PM Modi right.