New Delhi: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath won in the Gorakhpur (Urban) seat with over one lakh votes.
This is the first assembly election for Adityanath — a five-time Member of Parliament — who did not contest the assembly election in 2017, becoming a Legislative Council member after becoming the CM.
Earlier, there was speculation that he would be contesting from Ayodhya, the epicentre of Hindutva politics, but the party decided to field him from Gorakhpur (Urban). This is Yogi’s home city, and the Gorakhnath Math, of which he is the mahant (head), is located in Gorakhpur. He represented the Gorakhpur Lok Sabha seat from 1998 till he became the chief minister in 2017.
The BJP had won 44 of the 62 assembly seats in the 10 districts including and around Gorakhpur in 2017.
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Gorakhpur witnessed a high-profile contest as the Samajwadi Party fielded Subhavati Shukla, the wife of late Upendra Dutt Shukla, a former BJP leader, while the Congress fielded Chetna Pandey, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) gave the ticket to Khwaja Shamsuddin. Chandra Shekhar Aazad ‘Ravan’, chief of the Azad Samaj Party and Bhim Army and a prominent Dalit leader, also contested from here. As of 12.30 pm, Shukla was the runner-up with 10,422 votes, and Aazad had polled 2,044 votes.
And while Adityanath had to focus on his seat too, he still managed to address over 200 rallies in person across the state.
Adityanath, is the second leader to contest from the district as a chief minister after Tribhuvan Narayan Singh, who lost in 1971.
The RSS had also put its might behind Yogi Adityanath as Sangh functionaries canvassed votes across the region. ThePrint had earlier reported how the Ram Temple in Ayodhya, the Kashi Vishwanath Temple Corridor in Varanasi (which connects the temple with the Ganga riverside), and the upliftment of Gorakhnath Math’s surrounding areas have been frequent refrains in the campaign.
(Edited by Shreyas Sharma)
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