Rajasthan CM candidate: Will BJP prefer Baba Balak Nath, a mirror image of Yogi, over Vasundhara Raje?

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By ETV Bharat English Desk

Published : Dec 5, 2023, 5:35 PM IST

Rajasthan CM candidate: Will BJP prefer Baba Balak Nath, a mirror image of Yogi, over Vasundhara Raje?

As BJP is taking time to announce its Chief Minister in Rajasthan where the party registered a massive win last Sunday, it is Mahant Balak Nath who has risen as a unique candidate for the post. The BJP fielded Nath against Congress' Imran Khan and the former scored an easy victory by a margin of over 6,000 votes. The question remains: Will the saffron party retain its confidence in Vasundhara Raje or will it bring in Nath to lead the state?

Jaipur: After pocketing 115 of 199 seats in recent Rajasthan Assembly elections, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is deliberating on the Chief Minister candidate for the state.

While Vasundhara Raje, former Rajasthan Chief Minister, remains a key candidate, it is BJP MP from Alwar Baba Balak Nath who is considered as a strong alternative to lead the state. Seen as a mirror image of Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath, the saffron-attired Mahant's statements have earned him the status of a 'firebrand leader' of the BJP.

The seer from Asthal Bohar Math Rohtak won from the Tijara constituency in the recently concluded elections defeating Congress' Imran Khan by 6173 votes.

Personal Details: Born on 16 April 1984 in the Kohrana village of Alwar district in Rajasthan, Nath became a 'saint' at the age of six. He was a disciple of Mahant Chandnath Yogi, the then BJP MP from Asthal Bohar Math Gaddinshin Alwar. After Chandnath died in 2016, Balaknath's father, farmer Subhash Chandra Yadav, enthroned him to the Asthal Bohar Math. After completing his education, Balak Nath started running the Hanumangarh Dera in Rajasthan.

Political Career: In 2019, Mahant Balak Nath was nominated as BJP candidate for Lok Sabha from Alwar, Rajasthan and he won the elections by defeating Bhanwar Jitendra Singh of Congress by the margin of 3 lakh votes.

Mahant Balak Nath is the third Mahant of the Mastnath Math to have a strong political career. Earlier, Mahant Shrayonath of this Math had contested the Assembly Elections from the Kiloi constituency, thrice. After the formation of the state in 1966, the first Assembly Elections were held in 1967, in which there was a contest between Mahant Shryonath of Mastnath Math and Ranbir Singh Hooda, father of former CM Bhupendra Singh Hooda, from Kiloi constituency. Shrayonath emerged victorious as an independent candidate. However, a year later, Ranbir Singh Hooda defeated Shryonath in the mid-term elections. In 1972, Shryonath, taking revenge for the previous defeat, won against Captain Pratap Singh, son of Ranbir Singh Hooda.

BJP's experiments: Balak Nath's guru Mahant Chandnath contested the 2004 by-election as a BJP candidate from the Behror Assembly Seat. Chandnath defeated party rebel Jaswant Singh Yadav by 13,000 votes. 10 years later in 2014, BJP awarded him a ticket for the Lok Sabha elections from Alwar. He won this election by defeating veteran Congress leader Jitendra Singh. After Chandnath died in 2017, the disciple and head of the monastery, Balak Nath, contested the Lok Sabha elections from Alwar and won. In a new experiment, BJP fielded several MPs in the Assembly Election, in which Balak Nath contested from Tijara and won.

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