It seems that the growing popularity of the Hindu Yuva Vahini (HYV) hasn’t gone down well with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and a section of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ever since its patron Yogi Adityanath became the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh.
According to an Indian Express report, RSS’ top brass is believed to have conveyed to Yogi their reservations regarding HYV, on the ground, that runs ‘parallel’ to both the RSS and BJP. More so, when several complaints have come from across the state against aggressive HYV workers flexing their political — and, in some cases, physical — muscles in several “communal” incidents over the past two months.
The Opposition parties have also targeted the BJP and have been vocal in their complaints about activists wearing saffron scarves harassing people in the name of cow vigilantism and Hindutava. Both the RSS and the BJP have expressed their concern and reportedly told Yogi that they are worried over the kind of impact the HYV show of strength might have on the image of the state government.
In the run-up to the recent Assembly elections, Adityanath sacked HYV state president Sunil Singh after the latter announced he would field candidates against the BJP. After the election result, Rakesh Rai was appointed HYV’s new state president and PK Mall as state organisation secretary with a plan to expand HYV in other parts of the state including western UP.
According to the report, speaking about RSS’ reservations, Mall said that this wasn’t in his knowledge. About HYV, he said that it is a social and cultural organisation associated with Gorakhnath Peeth just like various other organisations run by the peeth. No one should have any objections over it.
Last month in Gorakhpur, Adityanath held separate meetings with HYV and RSS workers. He reportedly urged HYV to maintain “decency,” not misuse saffron as the party’s colour, monitor government work and flag any discrepancies to their colleagues in HYV — not misbehave with any officer.
He is said to have told the HYV that any “indecent or illegal” act by someone in a saffron scarf could end up hurting the image of the organisation or the BJP.
As reported by The Indian Express earlier, after Adityanath took charge as CM, HYV has seen a record surge in applications — from an average of 500-1000 applications every month until February to about 5,000 applications per day.
Founded in 2002, HYV has the image of an aggressive pro-Hindutva organisation that claims to work for Hindu culture, cow protection and against untouchability. So far, HYV’s activities were confined to Gorakhpur and adjoining districts, but ever since Adityanath became the CM, the HYV is getting immense support.