India: Hardline priest sworn in as head of Uttar Pradesh state

Source: Irish Times [Ireland]

“A hardline Hindu religious leader was sworn in on Sunday as head of India’s most populous and politically significant northern Uttar Pradesh state. Yogi Adityanath, facing charges of attempted murder and inciting violence against Muslims, took the oath of office in the provincial capital Lucknow after his Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) won a landslide victory in provincial elections last week. The 44-year-old was hand-picked by prime minister Narendra Modi, who attended his swearing-in ceremony, despite protests from opposition parties and Muslims, who constitute about 20 per cent of the state’s population of more than 204 million, If it was independent, Uttar Pradesh, which sends 80 members to India’s parliament, would be the world’s fifth most populous country.” (03/19/17)