27 October, 2020

“If We’re Re-Elected, Uttar Pradesh Will Get A New Identity As Uttam Pradesh”

One of the youngest chief ministers, Akhilesh Yadav, on his achievements and the challenges in running the most populous state of India

Photograph by Nirala Tripathi
“If We’re Re-Elected, Uttar Pradesh Will Get A New Identity As Uttam Pradesh”

With assembly elections in the most populous state of the Union (at over 20 crore, UP’s population is almost double that of Maharashtra and much larger than that of countries like England, Germany and France) due early next year, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and the BJP are making determined bids to wrest control from the Samajwadi Party government in the state. While they are targeting an ‘inexperienced chief minister’ tied to the apron strings of elders in his political family and helpless against the rampant lawlessness in the state, Akhilesh Yadav, still one of the youngest chief ministers at 42, is dismissive of the charges. Convinced that his development record will see him through, he tells Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow that people would judge him by his work. And while he does seem to have come into his own, having finally got a chief secretary and a director general of police of his own choice and not of his father’s, he assumed an air of nonchalance to the political challenges he is likely to face. Excerpts from...



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