BJP MP Yogi Adityanath set to rake up Hindutva issues in bypolls away from the development angle pursued by the BJP in their campaign for the Lok Sabha polls, BJP MP from Gorakhpur Yogi Adityanath plans to discuss core Hindutva issues — check on conversion, ‘love jihad’, ban on cow slaughter and amending article 370 — to campaign for the upcoming bypolls.

Adityanath has been in the thick of controversy lately after an undated video showing him saying ‘for every Hindu girl converted, 100 Muslim girls will be converted as retaliation’ going viral.

He has been made the star campaigner for the BJP along with Union minister Kalraj Mishra and state BJP chief Laxmikant Bajpai. Kalraj Mishra endorsed Adityanath’s views on ‘love jihad’ on Friday.

“What Yogi Adityanath has said with regard to love jihad is true and discussions should be held on important issues including this one,” he told media persons here.

The bypolls have been scheduled for September 13 and the results will be out on September 16. According to sources, the setback faced by the BJP in the Bihar bypolls has forced the party leadership to redraw their UP strategy.

While, there is no grand alliance to challenge them, the fact that the BSP has withdrawn from the contest has paved way for a direct fight between the BJP and SP.

While the SP is the ruling party in the state, the BJP is riding high on the Modi wave. Of the 11 assembly seats, four — Saharanpur, Bijnore, Thakurdawara and Noida — located in West UP have witnessed communal clashes.

Talking to HT, Adityanath said that love jihad would be among the Hindutva issues raised by the BJP. He claimed that the issue is real and should be seen as a conspiracy against the Hindu community.

He added that the video which went viral was possibly doctored in a smear campaign against him. In the state executive meeting held at Mathura to discuss the political strategy of the party, the term ‘love jihad’ was not used, but concern was expressed over the conversion of Hindu women and ‘forced’ marriages.