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POST TIME: 22 June, 2019 00:00 00 AM
Thousands join yoga event in capital
Staff Reporter, Dhaka

Thousands join yoga event in capital

Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen, Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Riva Ganguly Das participate in the yoga sessions as the 5th International Day of Yoga (IDY) was celebrated at the Bangabandhu National Stadium in the capital yesterday. Focus Bangla Photo

Around 7,000 people from all walks of life, including ministers and the Indian high commissioner to Bangladesh, participated in the Fifth International Day of Yoga (IDY) in the capital for good health and peace of mind yesterday (Friday). The International Day of Yoga—its theme being "Climate Action"—is observed to raise awareness worldwide about the practices of yoga. Students from various educational institutions, yoga associations and institutes, sports associations, actors, singers and others took part in the fifth IDY at the Bangabandhu National Stadium in Dhaka.

Foreign minister Dr AK Abdul Momen, railways minister Md Nurul Islam Sujan, state minister for shipping Khalid Mahmud Chowdhury and other distinguished persons took part in the event. The celebrations kicked off with the screening of a video message of Indian prime minister Narendra Modi, while Indian high commissioner Riva Ganguly Das delivered the welcome address.

The foreign minister said: “I have been familiar with yoga for a long time. We used to do it at home. Now, such an event is being carried out at both national and international levels. It’s beneficial for the body, mind and soul. It brings self-discipline and peace. It helps us keep our head clear and brings welfare to the nation.”

“I’m very pleased. Many people have come to the field to do yoga. I’m delighted,” Riva Ganguly Das said. “India took the initiative and the United Nations (UN) recognised the day in 2014. A total of 175 countries, including Bangladesh, recognised the day at that time. The day is being observed at many places around the globe. It is also being held at nine big places of Bangladesh,” she added. “Many of us do physical exercises at parks and other places. But it is not held formally. The Indian high commissioner in Dhaka has organised it in many big towns of Bangladesh,” Nurul Islam Sujan said.

“Yoga brings good health and peace of mind. Everybody should do it. It will bring discipline in life,” he added.

Khalid Mahmud Chowdhury said: “Yoga keeps the mind at ease and can help reduce restlessness in society.”

Yoga experts and members of the Indira Gandhi Cultural Centre (IGCC) demonstrated Common Yoga Protocol and yoga asanas before the participants, both male and female. The UN proclaimed June 21 as International Yoga Day on December 11, 2014 after a resolution was passed by voting by UN members.

The day has been observed in a festive mood in Bangladesh on a large scale since 2015. In 2017, around 5,000 people participated in the event at the Bangabandhu International Stadium. Earlier, the Indian high commission had announced that the event would be free and all participants would get free yoga mats, T-shirts and water bottles were distributed on the first-come-first -served basis.