Who is Mahant Balaknath? Meet BJP's top contender for Rajasthan CM post

Balaknath, an MP from Alwar, is also known as the 'Yogi of Rajasthan'

Untitled design - 1 Mahant Balaknath | X

The BJP has wrested Rajasthan back from the Congress with an absolute majority. While the BJP leads in 112 seats around Sunday noon, the Congress, on the other hand, has been relegated to 71 seats in the 119-member Assembly. 

While the final results are expected to be out soon, the focus has now shifted to the potential chief minister faces in the state. And, one name actively doing rounds is that of Mahant Balaknath, the MP from Alwar. 

Currently contesting from the Tijara seat in the Assembly election, Mahant Balaknath is leading against Congress candidate Imran Khan. An MP from Alwar, Balaknath is the eighth mahant from Mastnath Mutt of Rohtak which runs multiple educational institutions and hospitals.

Though born and raised in a farmer family, Balaknath had an early initiation into sannyasa and left his home for the Ashram at the age of six. 

Though a saint, Balaknath had often been targetted by Congress which claimed he purchased 32 acres of land worth Rs 52 crore at Cultus Lake in Canada, a charge which he called "baseless and frivolous."

Balaknath is widely addressed as the 'Yogi of Rajasthan'. Belonging to the same Nath sect as Yogi Adityanath, Balaknath calls the UP chief minister his "big brother" and claims that the comparison is because they both maintain "transparency in lives" and are "committed to people and development". 

Balaknath, who is 39 years old, was spotted visiting the BJP national general secretary BL Santhosh on Saturday.  However, he refused to comment on being the top contender for the post. "As far as the chief minister post is concerned, our Prime Minister is the face of BJP and we will continue to work under his leadership. The decision on who will be the chief minister will be taken by the party. I am happy as an MP and want to serve the society," he told reporters when quizzed about the meeting. 

The speculations that Balaknath could be the face of the party in the state gained strength when Home Minister Amit Shah and Yogi Adityanath came to campaign for him. But, Balaknath denies there is anything special about him. "They campaigned for me just like they campaigned for other candidates of the party," he told reporters.


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