NEW DELHI: On a day when Prime Minister Narendra Modi led the 4th International Yoga Day celebrations in Dehradun, the Congress party on Thursday accused him of not practising yoga with the right intention and promoting it for political gains.
While noting that 'yoga' alone cannot improve country's economic situation, Congress also accused PM Modi and his party BJP of "fragmenting the society".
"PM Modi and his party have fragmented the society. You cannot heal it through yoga. Yoga can keep your body healthy but not the society. It cannot improve the economic situation in the country," Congress spokesperson Pramod Tiwari said.
"In order to do that, they (the Modi government) will have to change their way of working. They will have to take everyone along," Tiwari added.
"The first theory of yoga is one should not show off. This is a very personal thing if someone is practising it. Modiji has breached that theory,'' the Congress leader said.
"He should promote it but Modiji doesn`t practise yoga with the right intention.... he wants to use its promotion for political advantage," Tiwari said.
The remarks from Congress spokesperson came hours after PM Modi said that yoga has the power to unite individuals, society, country and the world at large, and has emerged as a major unifying force globally.
Millions of people around the world celebrated the 4th International Yoga Day on Thursday and PM Modi urged all those who are yet to try Yoga to shed their doubts and inhibitions.
"Yoga has become one of the most powerful unifying forces in the world. People from all over have embraced Yoga and glimpses can be seen in the manner in which International Yoga Day has been marked every year," he said at Dehradun's Forest Research Institute.
"Yoga Day has become a mass movement in the quest for good health and well-being," he added.
PM Modi especially urged fellow countrymen to practice Yoga diligently and feel proud to have gifted it to the world. "Today, people across the world have developed a fondness for Yoga. We, as Indians, should feel proud of it. From Dehradun to Dublin, from Shanghai to Chicago and from Jakarta to Johannesburg, there is Yoga," he said.
Known for his strong commitment towards a healthy body and a sound mind, PM Modi said high-stress levels can be addressed through practising specific asanas and that people can better their lives just by incorporating Yoga in their daily lives. He recently released a video which showed his morning exercise regimen which included a number of asanas.
In Dehradun, PM Modi was joined by nearly 50,000 participants and hundreds of thousands from across the globe to practice Yoga.
(With PTI inputs)