The United Nations(UN)’s International Day of Yoga (IDY) is annually observed across the globe on 21st June to create awareness about the benefits of practising yoga, an ancient physical, mental and spiritual practice that originated in India.
- 21st June 2023 marks the observance of the 9th International Day of Yoga.
The theme of IDY 2023 is “Yoga for Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” – ‘Yoga for ‘The World is One Family’.
Significance of Yoga
i.The word Yoga is derived from the Sanskrit root ‘Yuj’, meaning ‘to join’ or ‘to yoke’ or ‘to unite’. The word symbolises the union of body and consciousness.
ii.In 2016, Yoga was inscribed on the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity
i.The United Nations General Assembly(UNGA) adopted the resolution A/RES/69/131 in December 2014 and proclaimed the 21st June of every year as the International Day of Yoga.
ii.The first-ever International Day of Yoga was observed on 21st June 2015.
- The proposal to establish International Day of Yoga was 1st introduced by Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi in his address during the opening of the 69th session of the UNGA.
- The draft resolution of the International Day of Yoga, proposed by India, was endorsed by a record 175 member states.
The 9th International Day of Yoga is organised by the Permanent Mission of India to the UN in collaboration with the UN Secretariat at the UN Headquarters in New York, The United States of America (USA).
Note: Narendra Modi, Prime Minister (PM) of India, attended the Yoga program at the UN Headquarters.
Observance in India:
PM Narendra Modi’s address on IDY 2023:
Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi virtually addressed the celebration of the IDY 2023 in India led by Jagdeep Dhankhar, Vice President (VP) of India, at Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh(MP).
- VP Jagdeep Dhankhar led the mass demonstration of the Common Yoga Protocol (CYP).
Mangubhai Patel, Governor of MP; Shivraj Singh Chauhan, Chief Minister (CM) of MP; Sarbananda Sonowal, Union Minister of Ayush; Dr Munjpara Mahendrabhai, Minister of State(MoS) for Ayush along with Cabinet Minister of MP participated in the event.
Yoga from Arctic to Antarctica:
On the occasion of the IDY 2023, as a part of the “Yoga from Arctic to Antarctica”, Yoga demonstration was organized in countries falling in and around the Prime Meridian line and on the North Pole and South Pole regions.
- Scientists and Researches at the Indian research bases in the Arctic and Antarctica namely Himadri and Bharati also participated in the Yoga demonstration.
Ocean Ring of Yoga by Indian Navy:
On the occasion of the IDY 2023, the Indian Navy formed an “Ocean Ring of Yoga”, under which the Indian Naval Ships deployed in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR) visit various ports in friendly foreign countries and spread the message of the IDY 2023 theme “Yoga for Vasudhaiv Kutumbakam”.
- The event was planned by the Ministry of AYUSH in coordination with the Ministry of Defence and other ministries.
About Ocean Ring of Yoga:
i.Under this, Port calls are planned at Chattogram (Bangladesh), Safaga (Egypt), Jakarta (Indonesia), Mombasa (Kenya), Toamasina (Madagascar), Muscat (Oman), Colombo(Sri Lanka), Phuket(Thailand) and Dubai (United Arab Emirates-UAE) by naval ships Kiltan, Chennai, Shivalik, Sunayna, Trishul, Tarkash, Vagir, Sumitra and Brahmaputra respectively.
ii.As a part of Oceans Ring of Yoga, around 3500 naval personnel onboard the 19 Indian Naval Ships have travelled around 35000 kilometres as Yoga ambassadors in both national and international waters.
iii.The activities are focused on the “Common Yoga Protocol – CYP”.
iv.The Indian Navy has also conducted Mass camps, workshops, poster-making competitions, quiz contests and lectures on “Health Benefits of Yoga”.
- Indian Army, Indian Navy, Indian Air Force along with Indo Tibetan Border Police Force (ITBP), Border Security Force (BSF), and Border Roads Organisation (BRO) made a chain of Yoga demonstration in unison named “Yoga Bharatmala”.
- The Yoga demonstration along the Indian coastline and islands was termed as “Yoga Sagarmala”.
Yoga Mahotsav 2023:
On 20th June 2023, the Department of Youth Affairs, Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports(MoYAS) organised the “Yoga Mahotsav” at Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium, New Delhi, Delhi in run-up to the IDY-2023.
- The event featured a session on ‘Benefits and Technique of Rajyoga and Meditation’ by Prajapita Brahma Kumari Ishwariya Vishwa Vidyalaya and Yoga demonstrations by Yoga Instructors from Morarji Desai National Institute of Yoga.
Yoga Mahotsav – 100 days countdown:
On 13th March 2023, the Union minister for Ayush Sarbananda Sonowal inaugurated the three-day event Yoga Mahotsav 2023 to commemorate the 100 days countdown to IDY 2023.
- The event featured a range of programs and activities which will include talks/discourses by Yoga gurus, Vice Chancellors Summit to share their experience, States/UTs Ayush Summit, Yoga Fusion/Demonstration, and Yoga rhythmic performance.