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Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath today said that he did not know he was to become the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh till a day before the oath-taking ceremony.
“I had never given it a thought. Neither, did I aspire nor made any request to become a chief minister. It was just a day before the oath-taking ceremony that I was made aware by BJP president Amit Shah that I was to become the chief minister,” said UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath
The leader from Gorakhpur had planned to go on an overseas trip after the election results were declared in Uttar Pradesh. But, Adityanath said that he was a little miffed when the Prime Minister’s Office rejected his passport.
Adityanath further went on to narrate the whole episode in a detailed fashion.
Here is his conversation with India Today’s Managing Editor Rahul Kanwal.
Rahul Kanwal: Did you ever dream to become the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh? When did you realise that you will be the one?
Yogi Adityanath: I had never given it a thought actually. Neither did I aspire or made any request. Yes, our party’s president (Amit Shah) did give us certain responsibilities during some of his meetings with us. He directed us how we can work together in various fields. After the Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh, I had to go overseas for some work. We were so busy during the three months of campaigning that we thought of taking a break.
We got the opportunity when Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj called me on March 4 or 5 and informed that a Parliamentary team had to visit Port of Spain [Trinidad and Tobago] and I would be part of it. The idea was to conclude our election campaigning on March 6, and then go on the trip. She informed us that the team will go on March 14. I thought, all the much better. The election results will be out on March 11, and then we could go for a week. I sent my request for the same and submitted my passport. But PMO returned my passport on 10th… The Foreign Ministry official informed me that another MP will go in my place. I was a little disappointed since this was the third time that I had got the opportunity. But I had myself declined it on two occasions. It would have been better if I had declined the opportunity the third time too. I had to come back to Gorakhpur the same day. So, when I reached the airport, the foreign minister called me and said that the prime minister wanted me to stay back in India because election results were going to be announced and that I may be required.
I returned to Gorakhpur. We celebrated Holi in Gorakhpur. On March 14 or 15, I came to Delhi for a BJP Parliamentary meeting. I hadn’t met any leader since the election results, but I got the chance to meet with our party’s national president Amit Shah there. He wanted to meet me…
In my meeting with Amit Shah, we had some general conversation, discussed the election results in Uttar Pradesh, after which I returned to Gorakhpur the next day on 17th. The party president called me again in the morning asking why I had returned to Gorakhpur without a proper discussion, and requested my presence again in Delhi immediately. For this, he sent a chartered the next day.
It is when I reached Delhi that Amit Shah informed me that I had to go back to Uttar Pradesh to take oath as the new chief minister.
I hadn’t carried any luggage or spare clothes with me from Gorakhpur, and was in a fix. But, then he told me to go to Lucknow as I was. Reached Lucknow at 5 pm where I was chosen as an Assembly leader in a meeting. The next day, I was sworn in. So, it was just a day before the oath-taking ceremony that I was made aware by the BJP president.
Note: CM Yogi Adityanath’s comments have been translated from Hindi. Corrections have been made to this article since it was first published.