In an interesting move, Union Home Minister Amit Shah went all out endorsing UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath as BJP’s face for 2022 state assembly elections. He said electing Yogi in 2022 was very necessary if people wanted PM Modi to be re-elected in 2024. Shah appealed that “Modiji ko ek aur mauka dijijye, Yogiji ko mukhyamantriji banadijiye” (Give Modi one more opportunity. Make Yogi chief minister again). Shah’s fulsome endorsement of Yogi nixed speculation about the status of his relationship with the UP leader. For some time there has been a view that there was perhaps an undercurrent between the two leaders close to Modi. Age-wise, Shah and Yogi are almost contemporaries; both in their 50s; though Shah is a couple of years older than the UP CM. In terms of profile, both leaders are known to aggressively pursue Hindu causes and interests. So it is in this context that Shah’s backing of Yogi becomes significant. In 2017, Amit Shah as BJP President, had tirelessly worked for his party’s astounding victory in UP and helped Yogi become CM for the first time. Last week, Shah returned to Lucknow to launch BJP’s campaign for 2022. People who worked with him in the past such as UP BJP General Secretary Sunil Bansal are also in the team as key strategists. Union HRD Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has been given charge of the state.