Firebrand Hindutva leader Yogi Adityanath will take over as the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, India's largest state on Sunday.
The controversial saffron-robed politician was not the BJP's first choice when speculation about the next CM nominee began floating but on Saturday evening, he was elected as the leader of the legislature party.
He will have two deputies - Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma.
5 THINGS YOU MUST KNOW ABOUT YOGI ADITYANATH
- His original name is Ajay Singh Bisht. He studied at Garhwal University and completed his B.Sc, before becoming a yogi at the Gorakhnath temple at Gorakhpur in eastern Uttar Pradesh.
- When his spiritual guru Mahant Avaidyanath quit politics as Gorakhpur MP, Adityanath was elected for the first time as an MP from Gorakhpur in 1998. He was the youngest MP in the 12th Lok Sabha. He has never lost an election since.
- Yogi Adityanath founded the Hindu Yuva Vahini, a Hindutva youth brigade active in Eastern UP. Its volunteers have been active as cow protection activists in Eastern UP. Hindu Yuva Vahini put up candidates in the UP Assembly elections as well.
- He was appointed the Mahant of Guru Gorakhnath Temple after Mahant Aavaidyanath died in 2014. Yogi Adityanath was also made the Peethadhishwar of Gorakhnath mutt ad head of the Gorakhnathi sect.
- He has had a strained relationship with his party and the powerful Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh for creating a parallel Hindutva organisation. The tension had peaked in December 2006 when he organised a Virat Hindu Sammelan in Gorakhpur at the same time as BJP's national executive in Lucknow.