After a series of controversies surrounded the Yoga day celebrations scheduled to take place on June 21, the government has decided to not mandate people to take up Suryanamasakar or chanting ‘OM’ during yoga.
“The Suryanamaskar asana…last year also we had not taken it. It is a complex exercise. It is difficult to do in 45 minutes and for people who are new to the exercise. Therefore we have not kept this one,” said AYUSH Minister Naik
There has been a controversy over this asana, with Muslim groups saying their faith does not allow such a practice. Naik dismissed the controversy related to chanting of ‘Om’ during the event and it has not been made compulsory.
“We have not made it compulsory…. We have made those people who are opposing understand this and it seems they have understood …But, without OM, yoga cannot be complete,” said Naik.
There was a controversy recently took over the UGC’s directive asking universities and colleges to follow Ayush ministry’s yoga protocol that begins with chanting of ‘Om’ and some Sanskrit shlokas during Yoga Day celebrations on June 21.
The government, however, had insisted that last year’s protocol has been maintained and no changes have been made. “There is no compulsion to chant ‘Om’,” it had earlier said.
The International Yoga Day is celebrated on June 21 since last year; with Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been leading event ever since he assumed office.
Meanwhile in US, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today told members of the US Congress that India has not yet claimed IPR on Yoga. Observing that there are over 30 million practitioners of Yoga in America, PM said that more Americans bend for yoga than to throw a curve ball.
“And, no Mr Speaker (Paul Ryan), we have not yet claimed intellectual property rights on Yoga,” said Modi in his address to the joint session of the Congress.
In 2014, the UN General Assembly recognised June 21 as the International Yoga Day after 177 member states supported the draft moved by India. The first International Day of Yoga was observed world over on June 21, 2015.