The 21st of June every year is celebrated as the international day of yoga and this year marked the 6th anniversary of the initiative. Until last year, people of all age groups got together in parks and community halls to perform yogasanas, kriyas, pranayama and meditation, noting the importance and benefits of practicing Yoga. However, this year, owing to the novel coronavirus and strict social distancing norms, citizens were not allowed to gather in public places to celebrate this day.
Although this year has been different, people and organisations had taken up the initiative to spread awareness on the importance and benefits of practicing yoga. The Ministry of Ayush conducted a video blogging contest on the theme “MY LIFE MY YOGA” or “Jeevan Yoga” from the confines of the homes of citizens through which they showcased their commitment and interest in performing yoga as a part of their daily routine. The contest was applicable to participants of all age groups and categories such as children, youth and adults and further into gender and level of excellence. The videos had to be for a duration of 3 minutes with a description of how the respective asanas/ kriyas/pranayama had benefitted them. The ministry also conducted virtual lectures by renowned yoga practitioners on Sunday.
The Union culture minister Prahalad Singh Patel urged all citizens to perform Surya namaskar (salutation to the sun god) on International yoga day and took to social media with the hashtag #10millionSuryaNamaskar, in the hope that 10 million citizens would join him in the effort. The Ministry of Culture celebrated International Yoga Day 2020 by organising a campaign Namaste Yoga from June 19 to 21, 2020 to achieve the goal of making yoga an indispensable part of everyone’s life.
As humans, we start performing yoga right from the mother’s womb to crawling as a toddler, after which we forget the art of calming the mind amidst the bends and brakes that life throws at us. During this pandemic, especially, it is important to keep mental good physical health and mental health as well. Yoga is the key to accomplishing both. As said by the Prime Minister, Yoga has emerged as a force of unity, deepens the bond of humanity and most importantly, improves immunity.