Hindu Yuva Vahini is being discussed in UP politics once more. However, the topic of discussion this time is not the organization’s aggressive Hindutva nature, but rather a decision by CM Yogi Adityanath to completely dissolve the Hindu Yuva Vahini. This decision has shocked some people, while others are debating the new political speculations behind it. People are apparently wondering why the decision was made to dissolve the organisation that helped Yogi Adityanath reach this position in Uttar Pradesh politics today. Was he asked to do so by the Bharatiya Janata Party? Is there another strategy behind Yogi Adityanath’s decision?
Hindu Yuva Vahini is an organisation that grants Yogi invincibility.
If you are interested in Indian politics, you must have heard various stories about the two leaders’ comparisons over the years. These two leaders are Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. This analysis is frequently heard on social media and in discussions among common BJP supporters that, after Modi, Yogi is the leader who will become the country’s Prime Minister. People frequently notice parallels between these two leaders.
These two leaders have never lost an election in a straight race. In Indian politics, they are unbeatable. Many factors contribute to Yogi’s invincibility, the most important of which is his own organisation, Hindu Yuva Vahini.
Dhirendra K Jha, a senior journalist, published a book titled Yogi Adityanath and The Hindu Yuva Vahini in 2017. In this book, he describes the moment when Yogi Adityanath had to confront a figure for the first time about his declining political popularity. According to a book review article published in the Hindustan Times, Yogi Adityanath, then 26, won the Gorakhpur Lok Sabha seat by a margin of 26000 votes in 1998. Soon after his first victory, Yogi Adityanath established his first non-political organisation, Gau Raksha Manch, to mobilise Hindu votes in his favour.
However, when Yogi Adityanath ran for re-election from Gorakhpur in 1999, his margin of victory was reduced to 7339 votes. This was a concerning situation. This is due to the fact that in 1967, Mahant Digvijay Nath was elected MP from Gorakhpur, and later Mahant Avaidyanath maintained political influence from here. However, seeing the margin of victory shrink in the 1999 election results, Yogi Adityanath may have seen his fears of political defeat for the first time and immediately began attempting to alleviate this fear.
The opportunity came in 2002 when Yogi Adityanath got the trump card
Yogi Adityanath realised that the ‘cow card’ would not work. New avenues for organising Hindu voters were required. Gujarat experienced violent communal riots in 2002. According to Dhirendra K Jha’s book, Yogi Adityanath not only renamed Gau Raksha Manch Hindu Yuva Vahini in the same year, but also broadened the scope of its work to include topics such as love jihad and conversion.
The organization did wonders, Yogi’s stature increased rapidly both inside and outside BJP
Vijay Trivedi, a senior journalist, also writes in his book Yada Yada hi Yogi, Yogi Adityanath, who was hurt by the Godhra incident, founded the Hindu Yuva Vahini on Ram Navami in the same year, 2002. Following this, Hindu-interest politics in Purvanchal, including Gorakhpur. According to the book Yogi pursued two-pronged politics through his organisation.
On the one hand, opposition to Muslim communalism, and on the other, an exercise to increase the BJP’s reliance on Gorakshanath Peeth in Purvanchal. It also served a dual purpose. Yogi’s independent political image grew in Purvanchal, and his standing within the BJP grew as well. The Hindu Yuva Vahini’s strength grew in Purvanchal, and its members were accused of inciting riots and imprisoned.
Yogi Adityanath himself was imprisoned for 11 days in 2007. He then came to the house after being released from jail, crying and accusing the then-SP government of torture. However, Yogi Adityanath and his cultural organisation (as Yogi has referred to it) handled the cases and the adverse political situation very well, and the effect was visible in the Gorakhpur election results.
Yogi’s margin of victory in the 2004 elections was one lakh 42 thousand votes, which he exceeded in 2009 and 2014. This power was once again visible in 2017, when Yogi Adityanath, whose name was nowhere in the race for CM, unexpectedly became the new Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh.
Then why the exercise to dissolve Hindu Yuva Vahini?
On August 2, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath arrived in Gorakhpur on a tour. He then ordered the Hindu Yuva Vahini to be dissolved. Following this, speculation began about Yogi Adityanath’s departure from the organisation with which he has achieved many political successes. It may appear to be an instant, but it is not.
According to its state in-charge, Raghavendra Pratap Singh, the organisation was not disbanded prior to the announcement of disbanding Hindu Yuva Vahini, but was closed for the new executive. He claims that new officers will be named shortly after the meeting.
According to some media reports, many other organisations have become active in the name of Hindu Yuva Vahini and have been accused of wrongdoing. As a result, the organization’s dissolution was announced. It will be reformed after identifying other organisations. People who understand Hindutva politics in the entire country, including Purvanchal, are also saying anonymously that this organisation became very active after Yogi Adityanath became CM.
Their involvement began with police stations and district administration, and their stream began to run independently of the BJP-Sangh workers. In light of the 2024 elections, it was necessary for everyone to swim in the same stream, which is why CM Yogi was asked to dissolve the organisation.
There is another angle to this story as well
According to a similar Hindustan Times report, after Eastern UP, it has now been decided to dissolve it in order to increase the organization’s base in Western UP and help the BJP in the 2024 general elections. If this occurs, it will represent a significant shift in the Hindu Yuva Vahini and Yogi Adityanath’s political style. It was previously observed that Hindu Yuva Vahini operated as an independent organisation, and there were numerous instances of political conflict with the BJP. However, after becoming CM in 2017, the Gorakhpur units were dissolved, and those who opposed it were shown the door. Now, under the guise of dissolving the organisation, discussions about reinforcing it are gaining traction.
According to Vijay Trivedi’s book Yada Yada Hi Yogi, Hindu Yuva Vahini has influence in approximately 25 thousand villages out of one lakh in Uttar Pradesh. This book was released one year into CM Yogi’s tenure. That is, this figure should be taken into account until 2017. At the same time, the Hindustan Times reported that by 2017, the number of Hindu Yuva Vahini members had surpassed 15 lakh.
It will be interesting to see whether this organisation regains its dominance or is absorbed into the Sangh-BJP ocean in the coming years. This organisation provided a lot of logistics to Yogi Adityanath’s ‘Azad Politics’ before he became the CM of UP. It will also be interesting to see if Yogi Adityanath will require such an organisation in the future.