India gears up for Yoga Day on Thursday, PM Modi to lead 50,000 enthusiasts in Dehradun's FRI

The United Nations General Assembly in December 2014 had declared that June 21 would be observed as International Day of Yoga every year.

India gears up for Yoga Day on Thursday, PM Modi to lead 50,000 enthusiasts in Dehradun's FRI
Pic courtesy: IANS (People perform Yoga on in Bengaluru on June 20, 2018)

New Delhi/Dehradun: The country is all geared up to roll out Yoga mats on Thursday to mark the fourth International Day of Yoga. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is scheduled to lead around 50,000 enthusiasts in performing asanas in Dehradun's Forest Research Institute.

Nashik-based Yoga promoter Vishwas Mandalik and the Yoga Institute in Mumbai have been selected for this year's prime minister's award for outstanding contribution in the field. The selection was done from among 186 nominations received under different categories.

Two panels were constituted - a screening committee (for preliminary evaluation) and an evaluation committee (jury). Nomination for the awards were invited through open advertisement. The screening committee chaired by the secretary (AYUSH) shortlisted some of the applications. The jury chaired by the Cabinet secretary, with the additional principal secretary to the PM, the foreign secretary, secretary (AYUSH) and some experts as members, examined the recommendations of the screening committee.

Mandalik, in 1978, he set up the first branch of Yoga Vidya Dham, and as of today, there are 160 centres in India. He established an institute called Yoga Vidhya Gurukul in 1983 for Yoga education. He wrote 42 books and developed 300 CDs to cover various training courses. 

The Yoga Institute, established in 1918 by Yogendraji, completed its 100 years serving the society. It produced more than 50,000 Yoga teachers and had over 500 publications to its credit. The institute contributed to the promotion and development of holistic Yoga for over 10 decades, serving all sections of the society. The winners would be felicitated with of a trophy, certificate and a cash award each. The value of each cash award is Rs 25 lakh. 

Meanwhile, five thousand Yoga events will be held in India, an AYUSH ministry official said, PTI reported. Eight events are planned in New Delhi alone with the main one at Rajpath, where PM Modi showcased a series of asanas on the first Yoga Day in 2015.

Union Ministers Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari, Suresh Prabhu, Uma Bharti, Ram Vilas Paswan, Ravi Shankar Prasad will be in Lucknow, Nagpur, Chennai, Rudraprayag, Hajipur and Patna respectively for Yoga Day, a BJP functionary said. Among other ministers, Ananth Kumar will be in Bengaluru, JP Nadda in Shimla, Narendra Singh Tomar in Gwalior, Piyush Goyal in Noida and Prakash Javadekar in Mumbai.

Around 50,000 Yoga enthusiasts including women personnel from paramilitary forces like BSF, CRPF and CISF will participate in an event at Delhi's Red Fort organised by the Brahma Kumaris. 

Yoga sessions will be also held across the world to mark the day, picked by the United Nations to celebrate the ancient Indian practice that has spread across the globe. Indian missions abroad are also coordinating activities, officials said, to mark the UN day for which the country had lobbied hard.

In 2015, the Yoga event on New Delhi's Rajpath made it to the Guinness World Records with 35,985 participants performing asanas at one venue and 84 nationalities being part of it.

The UN General Assembly in December 2014 had declared that June 21 would be observed as International Day of Yoga every year.

(With PTI inputs)

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