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2-min read

How UN recognised India's traditional exercise and June 21 as Yoga Day

The stage is set for a grand worldwide celebration of the 1st International Day of Yoga on Sunday, June 21, 2015. This is a sort of history which is being scripted by India, with its own ancient tradition going international like never before.

News18.com

Updated:June 20, 2015, 3:14 PM IST
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How UN recognised India's traditional exercise and June 21 as Yoga Day
The stage is set for a grand worldwide celebration of the 1st International Day of Yoga on Sunday, June 21, 2015. This is a sort of history which is being scripted by India, with its own ancient tradition going international like never before.
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The stage is set for a grand worldwide celebration of the 1st International Day of Yoga on Sunday, June 21, 2015. This is a sort of history which is being scripted by India, with its own ancient tradition going international like never before.

In the words of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, never before has a resolution of this kind been passed by the United Nations with an overwhelming majority in such short span of time. But how was the history scripted?

It started on September 27, 2014 when PM Modi, during his address to the United Nations General Assembly, first proposed that June 21, which is the longest day of the year, be marked as the International Day of Yoga, in a bid to unite the world in the name of the ancient Indian tradition.

The Prime Minister had said, "Yoga is an invaluable gift from our ancient tradition. Yoga embodies unity of mind and body, thought and action."

"Yoga is not just about exercise. It is a way to discover the sense of oneness with yourself, the world and the nature," he said.

Following the speech, a resolution was proposed to the United Nations, asserting on the need for a day dedicated to yoga. Highlighting the virtues of yoga, the resolution had noted that it was needed for "the importance of individuals and populations making healthier choices and following lifestyle patterns that foster good health."

The resolution was then endorsed by record 177 countries within a short span of 100 days. Referring to this, the Prime Minister, during his 'Mann Ki Baat' programme on May 31, 2015, said that no resolution had ever been passed by the United Nations with such record support in a short span of 100 days.

Taking note of the importance of the International Day of Yoga, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has asked its member nations to urge their citizens to reduce physical inactivity, which is one of the major causes of death worldwide.

Referring to the recognition of June 21 as an international day of yoga, 69th UNGA President Sam Kutesa pointed that "people from all walks of life have practiced yoga for centuries".

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon termed yoga as a "sport that can contribute to development and peace".

According to Modi, it was hard to imagine earlier that yoga would be tool to connect the world, and that it's very much relevant in the context of 'Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam' (the world is one family).

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