Indian Consulate, TV Asia host curtain-raiser to mark International Day of Yoga 2018

Indian Consulate, TV Asia host curtain-raiser to mark International Day of Yoga 2018

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EDISON, NJ(TIP): The Consulate General of India in New York, TV Asia and the Indian American
 community hosted a curtain-raiser on May 29 at the TV Asia auditorium 
in Edison, NJ, to mark the International Day of Yoga 2018.

The United Nations
 General Assembly on December 11, 2014 adopted an India led resolution 
to declare the day of Summer Solstice June 21 as the International Day 
of Yoga. The first IDY was celebrated at the United Nations on June 21, 

The event featured an interactive 
session with yoga exponents in the presence of Sandeep Chakraborty, 
India’s Consul General in New York. At the curtain-raiser, Chakravorty 
announced the 4thInternational Day of Yoga that the Indian 
Consulate is hosting on Governor’s Island (Picnic Point) in New York on 
June 16, 11 am-1 pm. Yoga events are also planned at Times Square, NY 
and elsewhere across the US.

The Indian Consulate has partnered with 
several organizations to help host the yoga events. Organizations 
represented at the curtain-raiser and the panel discussion included, 
Isha Foundation (Rajashree Kotekar); Art of Living Foundation (Aniket 
Gune); Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh (Ganesh Ramakrishnan); Vegetarian Vision 
(Sonali Vyas); World Yoga Community (Guru Dilipji); Hindu Temple Society
 of North America (Sanjay Attada); Mallakhamb Federation of USA 
(Chinmaya Patankar); Indian Cultural Association of North America 
(Shivadasan Nair); and Sahaja Yoga (Sheetal Bhanushali).

Panelists and prominent members of the community at the curtain-raiser at TV Asia

The panel discussion was moderated by Rohit Vyas, TV Asia News Director.

Dayashankar Vidyalankar, the resident 
yoga teacher of the Indian Consulate in NY, demonstrated quick yoga 
techniques for the benefit of the audience. Also, in attendance was 
Apoorv Om, the young Indian activist, who has a hearing impairment. He 
has been recognized by the United Nations for his outreach for inclusion
 of people with disabilities.

Children performing yogaChildren performing yoga

Sandeep Chakravorty, India’s Consul 
General in New York, said in his remarks that notwithstanding all the 
euphoria it was important to establish the Indian connection of yoga, 
which seemed to be getting diluted as yoga gains worldwide popularity. 
He mentioned that the year 2018 was important for yoga as it marked the 
125thanniversary of Swami Vivekanada’s address to the World Parliament of Religions in Chicago in 1893.

“Outside of India, the US is now a 
leading proponent of yoga,” said Chakravorty. “Hospitals, corporates and
 everyone else now believes in the healing power of yoga and 
meditation.” He added that terminally-ill patients with cancer were being recommended to increasingly practice yoga and meditation to improve their end-stage quality of life.

H R Shah, chairman and CEO of TV Asia speaking

H R Shah, chairman and CEO of TV Asia, 
mentioned that nearly 37 million people in the US were practicing some 
form of yoga and meditation. That, he said quoting media reports, had 
translated into a $16 billion yoga industry in the US, that included 
yoga schools, retreats, merchandizing and even health shows on TV.

“All of this was not possible if it was not for the efforts of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi
 that the United Nations recognized yoga’s universal appeal and on Dec 
11, 2014, proclaimed June 21 as the International Day of Yoga,” he said.
 Shah felt that the recognition by the UN was the turning point in 
yoga’s acceptance as transcending international borders.

Yoga, as the name suggests, he said, 
means to join or to unite, symbolizing the union of body and 
consciousness, was also helping bring people and countries together.

At the curtain-raiser, an audio-visual 
presentation gave a brief overview of yoga. The panelists also performed
 a symbolic curtain-raiser on stage to announce the events planned 
around International Day of Yoga 2018. One of the posters at the 
curtain-raiser aptly displayed a photo of Prime Minister Modi performing
 yoga with more than 35,000 people at the historic Rajpath in New Delhi 
on June 21, 2015.


The curtain-raiser at TV Asia was 
recorded on multiple-cameras, to be telecast on TV Asia for the extended
 benefit of the community in the US, Canada and worldwide.

More than 300 guests attended the event
Photos / courtesy Gunjesh Desai/TV Asia

More than 300 guests, including several 
prominent members of the Indian American community, attended the 
outreach event, interacting with the yoga exponents and asking them a 
variety of questions about yoga and meditation.


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