International Yoga Day
The United Nations’ (UN) International Yoga Day is held on June 21 each year to honor yoga, a 6,000+-year-old physical, mental and spiritual practice having its origin in Bharat India, aims to transform body and mind.
The declaration came after the call for the adoption of June 21 as International Day of Yoga by Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi during his address to UN General Assembly on September 27, 2014 where he stated: “Yoga is an invaluable gift of India’s ancient tradition. It embodies unity of mind and body; thought and action; restraint and fulfilment; harmony between man and nature; a holistic approach to health and well-being. It is not about exercise but to discover the sense of oneness with yourself, the world and the nature. By changing our lifestyle and creating consciousness, it can help us deal with climate change. Let us work towards adopting an International Yoga Day. Narendra Modi further stated that “Yoga embodies unity of mind and body; thought and action; restraint and fulfilment; harmony between man and nature; a holistic approach to health and well being.”
In suggesting June 21, which is the Summer Solstice, as the International Day of Yoga, Narendra Modi had said that the date is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and has special significance in many parts of the world.
This initiative found support from many global leaders. At first, the Prime Minister of Nepal Sushil Koirala supported the proposal of Modi. More than 170 countries including USA, Canada, China have supported this move, including 175 nations co-sponsoring the resolution. It had the highest number of co-sponsors ever for any UNGA Resolution of such nature. The resolution also saw a record number of 175 countries co-sponsoring it.