GREATER NOIDA: Less than a fortnight after he skipped Prime Minister Narendra Modi's event, UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav today stayed away from a President Pranab Mukherjee function, apparently due to the so-called 'Noida jinx'.
Yadav skipping the inauguration of a global services event is the fifth time he has avoided going to Noida. Mukherjee in Greater Noida inaugurated the second Global Exhibition on Services (GES), which aims at promoting India's trade in the sector. The sector is important as it contributes over 60 per cent to the GDP.
While Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik was present at the event, Yadav was absent. His government was represented by a state cabinet minister. "It has been 1.5 years that I have been Governor of Uttar Pradesh. During this period I had opportunity to welcome President three times in Noida ," Naik said.
The three events are-- World Dental Congress held in September 2014, convocation at Shiv Nadar University in January 2016 and Global Exhibition on Services held today.
Yadav did not attend these three events held at Noida. Earlier on April 5 and December 31 last year, Akhilesh had not attended Modi's programme. On April 5, the Prime Minister launched the 'Stand up India' scheme and on December 31, 2015 Modi laid the foundation of Delhi-Meerut Expressway.
Noida jinx, as per political circles, has in the past caught up with several chief ministers of Uttar Pradesh, including Veer Bahadur Singh, Narayan Dutt Tiwari, Kalyan Singh and Mayawati, who lost their chairs soon after visiting Noida.
The jinx started in 1988 when former chief minister Vir Bahadur Singh lost power within days of visiting Noida that year.
Later in 1997, Mayawati lost power after visiting Noida.
Earlier, in 1989, N D Tiwari and 10 years later, in 1999, Kalyan Singh suffered the same fate.
In 1995, Mulayam was out of power within months of his Noida visit.
The last one was Mayawati, who lost power in 2012 assembly elections after she flew down to Noida in October 2011 to inaugurate the Dalit Prerna Sthal.
In August 2012, Akhilesh inaugurated the Yamuna Expressway from Lucknow and avoided travelling to Noida. The following year, he inaugurated infrastructure projects in Gautam Buddh Nagar without visiting the city.
In 2001, the then UP CM Rajnath Singh inaugurated the DND flyway from Delhi, but did not visit Noida.