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A fiery Hindutva mascot

Setting the tone for 2019 general elections, the BJP picked its firebrand leader Yogi Adityanath to head Uttar Pradesh, the politically significant state. Adityanath, the torch-bearer of BJP's Hindutva ideology, is a science graduate from Garhwal University.

Mahant Yogi Adityanath alias Ajay Singh Bisht, who was born in Tehri Garwhal district of Uttarakhand on June 5, 1972, always hit the headlines for his provocative speeches and never shied away from making controversial remarks, be it about Islam or Pakistan.

Clad in his trademark saffron-coloured robe, Adityanath is expected to give a push to BJP's Hindutva-wrapped agenda of development with the emergence of a separate power base for the party in eastern UP. The 44-year-old priest-turned-politician Adityanath has rebelled against his party on several occasions, but because of the sway he holds over 'Hindu' voters, the BJP could not ignore his 'leadership qualities.

Adityanath is a strong votary of construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya. Most of his speeches hinge on divisive lines and he has been in the forefront in keeping the communal cauldron boiling.

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