Saturday, March 18, 2017

Yogi Adityanath is New CM of Uttar Pradesh

Yogi Adityanath has been appointed the new Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. The media are already up in arms about it:

Making him CM is a high-risk strategy. Scrupulous attention must be paid toward avoiding any riots in the state, which the opposition/media will seize upon to revive their "Bharat Jalao Party" rhetoric to create electoral backlash. If riots and other trigger events can be avoided, then he has a chance to both rehabilitate the state by rooting out corruption and radically reforming its bloated bureaucracy while improving services, as well as intimately tying such improvements to the Hindutva brand in the public perception. Just like the famous Protestant Work Ethic or Confucian Work Ethic, there may be an opportunity to demonstrate a Hindu Work Ethic to the investment markets. Risks are of course things like riots - we now have not only ISI but also ISIS who would be fishing for trouble in the state to boost their own agenda.

The strategy may pay off - but only if trigger-events for conflagrations can be avoided. As General Zia-ul-Haq used to say, "the water must boil, but not too hot." If Adityanath moves too crudely or in a headstrong way on the Ram Temple issue, then it could create a serious trigger-event that would reward the opposition with electoral backlash. Hopefully Adityanath is a team player, and won't try to win one battle at the cost of losing the wider war. He needs to be proactive in pursuing outreach to Muslims.

The media are putting out their own theories on why Yogi Adityanath has been appointed, claiming that he's being brought in as a foil to allow Modi to look more "moderate":

Oh well, at least it's a step up from "Indira is Secular, Indira is Communal"

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