Communal politics

In 8 years of Parliament, Yogi Adityanath’s favourite debate topic was Hindu affairs

Adityanath participated in 82 debates against the average of 38 for other MPs.

In a Facebook post on March 19, Union Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu said about Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath:

“It is unfortunate that some opponents, communalists are trying to portray him as a rabble-rouser and fringe personality. They should go through his parliamentary debates. Those reveal his seasoned thinking on various issues of governance,”

Factchecker did just that: it analysed Adityanath’s performance over the last eight years as a member of Parliament in the 15th and 16th Lok Sabha, using data from PRS Legislative Research, an advocacy focused on parliamentary affairs, and the Lok Sabha archives.

The four key findings were:

  1. While the 44-year-old politician raised a variety of concerns – including river pollution and rising cases of encephalitis – his most recurring choice of debates were on Hindu affairs and cow slaughter, particularly over the last three years.
  2. In the 16th and current Lok Sabha, 18% of Adityanath’s debates have focussed on Hindu issues, seven-percentage points more than during his previous term as MP. The topics include cow slaughter, enforcing a uniform civil code, and protection of Hindu pilgrims. Even his debates on the Enemy Property Bill (now an Act) and his concerns about Indian youth in Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, counted under internal security debates, held religious underpinnings.
  3. A science graduate, Adityanath had the most queries (57) for the ministry of health during the 16th Lok Sabha: 11 were on corruption in medical bodies, and six on population control measures to address India’s “reported demographic imbalance”, a reference to his belief that Muslims, who make up 14.2% of India’s population, were growing faster than Hindus.
  4. Adityanath asked almost as many questions (52) of the ministry of home affairs over the last eight years of the 15th and 16th Lok Sabha. Of these, 34% were related to fears about the effect of IS, Indian Mujahideen extremists and Christian separatists on internal security.

Here is a more detailed analysis:

15th Lok Sabha (June 2009 to February 2014)

Although Adityanath’s parliamentary attendance (72%) was slightly below the average for MPs from his state (79%) and the rest of the country (76%), he participated in more debates and asked more questions than the average MP, according to PRS Legislative Research data.

Adityanath participated in 82 debates against the average of 38 for other MPs.

While seven, or 8.5%, of the debates in which he participated were related to the railway budget, 11% of Adityanath’s debates were related to Hinduism. The topics included “reorganisation of the Amarnath Shrine Board and facilities for Amarnath pilgrims”; “lifting the ban on Kailash Mansarovar Yatra to Nepal”; and the need to “develop the area related to Ramayan era in Mithilanchal” (a proposed state in India that comprises part of the historic Mithila region, which extends into modern-day Nepal).

During this term, Adityanath, who has been charged for intimidation, rioting, promoting enmity between different groups and defiling a place of worship, also raised concerns over violence in Muslim-dominated Kishtwar district of Jammu and Kashmir, and Uttar Pradesh’s Moradabad district, where Muslims constitute nearly half the population.

Adityanath, a science graduate as we said, also discussed the pollution of Indian rivers six times. He participated in five debates on the spread and eradication of encephalitis and Japanese encephalitis, and five on according “central university status” to Gorakhpur University. On four occasions, he spoke about carving a separate Poorvanchal state from eastern Uttar Pradesh.

Source: PRS Legislative Research, Lok Sabha archives
Source: PRS Legislative Research, Lok Sabha archives

16th Lok Sabha (June 1, 2014 to March 15, 2017)

Adityanath participated in 56 debates – fewer than the average of 72 clocked by MPs from his state, PRS data shows.

In nearly a fifth of these – a seven-percentage-point jump over the previous term – the five-time MP (he was first elected to the Lok Sabha in 1998 at age 26) participated in debates that focussed on Hindu affairs. These included a national ban on cow slaughter, enforcing a uniform civil code, and ensuring the safety of Hindu pilgrims. Even his debates on internal security that voiced concerns about a conspiracy to bring Pakistanis to India through the Enemy Property Bill, and the alleged involvement of Indian youth in the Islamic State, carried religious undertones.

During this term, in four of five “Demand for Grants” debates on the railway budget that Adityanath participated in (data for the most recent debate in 2017 are yet to be put out) – which Naidu described as “level-headed and inspiring” – the Gorakhpur MP primarily praised the budget and congratulated the railway ministry while criticising the previous Congress-led government and states where the party still holds power. In one debate, he presented demands for grants to set up rail lines and to upgrade rail infrastructure in his constituency, Gorakhpur.

He also wanted “central university status” for Gorakhpur University, and asked – in four debates – for the Bhojpuri dialect of eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar to be regarded as a national language.

His concern for polluted rivers and the spread of encephalitis continued in his debates but took up a considerably smaller share (5%).

Source: PRS Legislative Research, Lok Sabha archives
Source: PRS Legislative Research, Lok Sabha archives

“Rapid reduction in the number of Sikhs and Buddhists along with sanatan (classical) Hinduism and the rapid increase in the Muslim population attract attention to the dangerous situation of demographic imbalance, it is shocking… the need for an effective equal civil law and population control is being felt within the country,” Adityanath said in a 2016 debate on uniform civil code.

While the country’s overall population grew at 17% in the decade to 2011, Census data showed Muslim population growth hit a 20-year low of 24.6% in 2011, as IndiaSpend reported in August, 2015.

Naidu, in his Facebook post, quoting a Hindustan Times report, said Muslims in the state welcomed Adityanath’s appointment. “A large number of Muslims seem to be celebrating,” the post reads.

30% of Adityanath’s questions to four ministries

In both the 15th and 16th Lok Sabha, Adityanath raised more questions than the average MP, with 347 queries (against the average of 300) upto February 2014 and 284 upto March 2017 (against the average of 180).

In the 16th Lok Sabha, queries to four ministries – external affairs, health and family welfare, home affairs and human resource development – formed 30% of his questions to 43 ministries.

In the 15th Lok Sabha, he directed nearly 50% of his questions to six of 39 ministries which include the four we mentioned earlier, and the ministries of railways and road transport and highways.

The external affairs ministry received 51 questions from Adityanath since 2009. Two-thirds of these pertained to his suspicions of anti-Indian activities and sentiments across India’s border, particularly in Nepal. Others include questions about imposing a ban on Pakistani movies and artists coming to India, security of the Indo-Nepalese border, and the “misbehaviour” of a Nepalese airliner towards Hindu pilgrims.

Bills on cow slaughter ban, ‘Hindustan’

Since 2009, Adityanath has had five private member’s bills pending in the Lok Sabha, more than the average of one per MP. They are:

  1. The Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014 (Amendment of article 1, etc.): This proposes a change in the country’s name, from “India, that is Bharat,” to “Bharat, that is Hindustan,” according to this 2014 report on private members’ bills and resolutions.
  2. The Ban on Cow Slaughter Bill, 2014: This bill, reintroduced in the 16th Lok Sabha, is a replica of Adityanath’s 2009 bill for the 15th Lok Sabha. In both versions, the three-page bill, which says slaughter of cow, bullocks, bulls and oxen should be banned on scientific lines, offers no details justifying the need for such a restriction.
  3. The Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2014 (Omission of article 44, etc.): This would turn the directive principle of creating a uniform civil code for India into a law. The implications of this bill would have far-reaching effects on the personal laws and practices of people of various religions in India.
  4. The Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2015 (Insertion of new article 25A): This seeks to insert a new article in the Indian Constitution that will ban forcible religious conversions.
  5. The High Court at Allahabad (Establishment of a Permanent Bench at Gorakhpur) Bill, 2015: This seeks a permanent bench of the Allahabad High Court in his constituency.

None of these bills has been passed yet. Adityanath’s High Court bill and the ban on forced religious conversions are yet to be introduced in the House, as the Indian Express reported in March, 2017.

This article first appeared on FactChecker.

We welcome your comments at
Sponsored Content BY 

Putting the patient first - insights for hospitals to meet customer service expectations

These emerging solutions are a fine balance between technology and the human touch.

As customers become more vocal and assertive of their needs, their expectations are changing across industries. Consequently, customer service has gone from being a hygiene factor to actively influencing the customer’s choice of product or service. This trend is also being seen in the healthcare segment. Today good healthcare service is no longer defined by just qualified doctors and the quality of medical treatment offered. The overall ambience, convenience, hospitality and the warmth and friendliness of staff is becoming a crucial way for hospitals to differentiate themselves.

A study by the Deloitte Centre for Health Solutions in fact indicates that good patient experience is also excellent from a profitability point of view. The study, conducted in the US, analyzed the impact of hospital ratings by patients on overall margins and return on assets. It revealed that hospitals with high patient-reported experience scores have higher profitability. For instance, hospitals with ‘excellent’ consumer assessment scores between 2008 and 2014 had a net margin of 4.7 percent, on average, as compared to just 1.8 percent for hospitals with ‘low’ scores.

This clearly indicates that good customer service in hospitals boosts loyalty and goodwill as well as financial performance. Many healthcare service providers are thus putting their efforts behind: understanding constantly evolving customer expectations, solving long-standing problems in hospital management (such as long check-out times) and proactively offering a better experience by leveraging technology and human interface.

The evolving patient

Healthcare service customers, who comprise both the patient and his or her family and friends, are more exposed today to high standards of service across industries. As a result, hospitals are putting patient care right on top of their priorities. An example of this in action can be seen in the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital. In July 2015, the hospital launched a ‘Smart OPD’ system — an integrated mobile health system under which the entire medical ecosystem of the hospital was brought together on a digital app. Patients could use the app to book/reschedule doctor’s appointments and doctors could use it to access a patient’s medical history, write prescriptions and schedule appointments. To further aid the process, IT assistants were provided to help those uncomfortable with technology.

The need for such initiatives and the evolving nature of patient care were among the central themes of the recently concluded Abbott Hospital Leadership Summit. The speakers included pundits from marketing and customer relations along with leaders in the healthcare space.

Among them was the illustrious speaker Larry Hochman, a globally recognised name in customer service. According to Mr. Hochman, who has worked with British Airways and Air Miles, patients are rapidly evolving from passive recipients of treatment to active consumers who are evaluating their overall experience with a hospital on social media and creating a ‘word-of-mouth’ economy. He talks about this in the video below.


As the video says, with social media and other public platforms being available today to share experiences, hospitals need to ensure that every customer walks away with a good experience.

The promise gap

In his address, Mr. Hochman also spoke at length about the ‘promise gap’ — the difference between what a company promises to deliver and what it actually delivers. In the video given below, he explains the concept in detail. As the gap grows wider, the potential for customer dissatisfaction increases.


So how do hospitals differentiate themselves with this evolved set of customers? How do they ensure that the promise gap remains small? “You can create a unique value only through relationships, because that is something that is not manufactured. It is about people, it’s a human thing,” says Mr. Hochman in the video below.


As Mr. Hochman and others in the discussion panel point out, the key to delivering a good customer experience is to instil a culture of empathy and hospitality across the organisation. Whether it is small things like smiling at patients, educating them at every step about their illness or listening to them to understand their fears, every action needs to be geared towards making the customer feel that they made the correct decision by getting treated at that hospital. This is also why, Dr. Nandkumar Jairam, Chairman and Group Medical Director, Columbia Asia, talked about the need for hospitals to train and hire people with soft skills and qualities such as empathy and the ability to listen.

Striking the balance

Bridging the promise gap also involves a balance between technology and the human touch. Dr. Robert Pearl, Executive Director and CEO of The Permanente Medical Group, who also spoke at the event, wrote about the example of Dr. Devi Shetty’s Narayana Health Hospitals. He writes that their team of surgeons typically performs about 900 procedures a month which is equivalent to what most U.S. university hospitals do in a year. The hospitals employ cutting edge technology and other simple innovations to improve efficiency and patient care.

The insights gained from Narayana’s model show that while technology increases efficiency of processes, what really makes a difference to customers are the human touch-points. As Mr. Hochman says, “Human touch points matter more because there are less and less of them today and are therefore crucial to the whole customer experience.”


By putting customers at the core of their thinking, many hospitals have been able to apply innovative solutions to solve age old problems. For example, Max Healthcare, introduced paramedics on motorcycles to circumvent heavy traffic and respond faster to critical emergencies. While ambulances reach 30 minutes after a call, the motorcycles reach in just 17 minutes. In the first three months, two lives were saved because of this customer-centric innovation.

Hospitals are also looking at data and consumer research to identify consumer pain points. Rajit Mehta, the MD and CEO of Max Healthcare Institute, who was a panelist at the summit, spoke of the importance of data to understand patient needs. His organisation used consumer research to identify three critical areas that needed work - discharge and admission processes for IPD patients and wait-time for OPD patients. To improve wait-time, they incentivised people to book appointments online. They also installed digital kiosks where customers could punch in their details to get an appointment quickly.

These were just some of the insights on healthcare management gleaned from the Hospital Leadership Summit hosted by Abbott. In over 150 countries, Abbott is working with hospitals and healthcare professionals to improve the quality of health services.

To read more content on best practices for hospital leaders, visit Abbott’s Bringing Health to Life portal here.

This article was produced on behalf of Abbott by the marketing team and not by the editorial staff.