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Wednesday, Sep 18, 2019

Magenta Line inauguration: What Noida jinx, Modi asks as he praises Yogi Adityanath

Adityanath by his side, PM Narendra Modi inaugurated the Noida-Kalkaji Metro line (Magenta Line) and addressed a public rally near Amity University in Noida Monday.

india Updated: Dec 25, 2017 23:17 IST
Vinod Rajput and Vaibhav Jha
Vinod Rajput and Vaibhav Jha
Noida, Hindustan Times
Prime Minister Narendra Modi takes a ride on a Metro train from Botanical Garden Station to Okhla Bird Sanctuary along with Uttar Pradesh governor Ram Naik and Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath on Monday.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi takes a ride on a Metro train from Botanical Garden Station to Okhla Bird Sanctuary along with Uttar Pradesh governor Ram Naik and Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath on Monday.(PTI)

Faith is important but blind faith is not desirable, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Monday, praising Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath for ignoring the so-called Noida jinx by visiting the Delhi suburb.

Modi was speaking at the inauguration of the Delhi’s Metro’s Botanical Garden-Kalkaji Mandir link, which will cut the travel time between south Delhi and Noida.

“A chief minister who thinks he will lose his chair if he visits Noida does not deserve to be the chief minister of any state,” Modi said.

The “jinx” that whoever visits Noida loses power has kept several Uttar Pradesh chief ministers away from the suburb fast-emerging as the favoured address of middle-class homebuyers priced out of Delhi. The fallacy became particularly popular after Mayawati, who visited the city as chief minister in 2011, lost power to the Samajwadi Party the year after her visit.

Adityanath visited Noida two days earlier, and again on Monday to accompany the Prime Minister for the inauguration of the Metro’s Magenta Line.

“Unfortunately there were superstitions associated with Noida, and in his own style Yogi Adityanath has risen above these superstitions and came to Noida. If anybody thinks not going to a place will prolong their CM tenure and vice versa, such a person does not deserve to be the chief minister in the first place,” Modi said.

He also said because of Adityanath’s attire his critics often perceive that the saffron-clad CM was not “modern enough”.

“Due to his saffron attire, few people find it fashionable to believe that Yogi Adityanath is not ‘modern enough’, but it is Yogi Adityanathji who has done what chief minister of UP did not do — he has come to Noida. Faith is important, but blind faith is not desirable,” the PM said.

Modi, who rode a train with Adityanath after inauguration, recalled he was told to avoid some places after he took over as the Gujarat chief minister but he visited those in his first year in office.

“When I became CM, people told me of a few places where no CMs went because they were inauspicious. I was clear... I would go to all those places in my first year itself. Driven by blind faith and superstition, leaders never went to places for decades. How unfortunate is that,” Modi said.

He was also effusive in his praise of BJP veteran and former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who turned 93 on Monday.

Vajpayee was the first passenger to travel in Delhi Metro on December 24, 2002 and 15 years on, the Metro had become a symbol of pride, he said.

Crediting Vajpayee for empowering people through his concept of good governance, Modi said the former prime minister had put thrust on good governance and connectivity.

“Atal ji had started PM Gram Sadak Yojna and started a new era of connecting each village with a road,” Modi said and went on to compare the former PM to emperor Sher Shah Suri, credited with laying a network of roads, including the famous Grand Trunk Road that linked east and west India and is one of the oldest and longest roads in Asia.

Like the Vajpayee government, he, too ,was trying to provide good governance. His government had doubled the work on roads when compared to the previous dispensation, Modi said.

Modi said good governance was the key to all-round development and it was time people shun the attitude of seeking personal gains while drawing up public schemes, adding the BJP had taken decisions in national interest.

“Governance cannot happen when the dominant thought process begins at ‘mera kya’ and ends at ‘mujhe kya’. We have changed these mindset. For us, decisions are about national interest and not political gains.”

Modi said his government was focussing on expanding infrastructure development in India and “work on railway infrastructure, expanding road network is happening at a historic pace under the tenure of our government at the Centre”.

He also extended Christmas greetings to around 20,000 people who gathered to listen to him at the Amity University ground in Noida.

First Published: Dec 25, 2017 16:34 IST