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Yoga is helping COVID-19 patients, says Narendra Modi

This file photo shows Prime Minister Narendra Modi performing yoga on International Yoga Day in Ranchi, India, June 21, 2019.

This file photo shows Prime Minister Narendra Modi performing yoga on International Yoga Day in Ranchi, India, June 21, 2019.   | Photo Credit: REUTERS

The world is feeling the need for yoga more than ever owing to the coronavirus pandemic and the ancient Indian practice is helping a large number of patients across the globe defeat the disease, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday.

The novel coronavirus especially attacks the respiratory system, and ‘pranayama’ or breathing exercise helps in strengthening the system, he said in his message on the sixth International Day of Yoga. It was celebrated with great enthusiasm across the country through electronic and digital media, an official statement said.

Mr. Modi said yoga has emerged as a force for unity and it does not discriminate as it is beyond race, colour, gender, faith and nations. “Yoga enhances our quest for a healthier planet. It has emerged as a force for unity and deepens the bonds of humanity. It does not discriminate. It goes beyond race, colour, gender, faith and nations. Anybody can embrace yoga.” 

In his nearly 15-minute address, the Prime Minister said that due to the pandemic, the world was feeling the need for yoga more than ever. “If our immunity is strong, it is of great help in defeating this disease. For boosting immunity, there are several methods in yoga, various ‘asanas’ are there. These ‘asanas’ are such that they increase the strength of the body and strengthen our metabolism,” he said.

Talking about the benefits of ‘pranayama’, Mr. Modi said it is very effective and has countless variations like ‘Sheetali, Kapalbhati and Bhrastika’. “All these forms of yoga help a lot in strengthening our respiratory and immune systems,” he said, urging people to include ‘pranayama’ in their daily routine.

 

A large number of COVID-19 patients all over the world are taking the benefits of all these techniques of yoga. The strength of yoga is helping them defeat this disease, he said.

Asserting that anybody can embrace yoga, the Prime Minister said that all that is needed is some part of one’s time and an empty space. 

“Yoga is giving us not only the physical strength, but also mental balance and emotional stability to confidently negotiate the challenges before us,” Mr. Modi said. “If we can fine-tune our chords of health and hope, the day is not far away when the world will witness the success of a healthy and happy humanity. Yoga can definitely help us make this happen,” he said.

With the shadow of the pandemic looming large, International Day of Yoga was marked on digital media platforms without mass gatherings. This year’s theme is ‘Yoga at Home and Yoga with Family’. 

Yoga Day is going digital for the first time since June 21, 2015, when it began to be celebrated annually across the world, coinciding with the Summer Solstice each year. On December 11, 2014, the United Nations General Assembly declared June 21 ‘International Day of Yoga’, months after the Prime Minister proposed the idea.

Also read: PM Modi shares 3D animated videos of him practising yoga

The Ministry of Ayurveda, Yoga & Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH) had planned a grand event in Leh, but cancelled it because of the pandemic.

 In his message on Sunday, Modi said the International Yoga Day is a day of unity and gives the message of universal brotherhood. 

 “It is a day of oneness and humanness. What brings us together, unites us, that is yoga. What bridges distances is yoga. In times of this coronavirus pandemic, people’s participation in the ‘My Life - My Yoga’ across the world shows that people’s interest in yoga is increasing,” he said.

 He said that doing work properly and fulfilling one’s duties is also a form of yoga.

 “Eating the right food, playing the right sports, having right habits of sleeping and waking, and doing your work and your duties is yoga,” Mr. Modi said.

 

 “With this ‘karmayoga’, we get the solution to all the problems. ‘Karmayoga’ is also helping others selflessly. This spirit of ‘karmayoga’ is embedded in the spirit of India. Whenever the need arose, the whole world witnessed India’s selflessness,” he said.

 The power as an individual, society and country increases manifold when people act according to yoga and with the spirit of ‘karmayoga’, Mr. Modi said.

Today we have to take a pledge in this spirit -- we will do everything possible for our health, for the health of our loved ones. As a conscious citizen, we will move forward unitedly as a family and society, he said.

The Prime Minister’s message was followed by a live demonstration of Common Yoga Protocol (CYP) by experts of Morarji Desai National Institute of Yoga.

‘Yoga for a fit body, serene mind’

President Ram Nath Kovind on Sunday said practicing yoga can help keep the body fit and mind serene amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Extending greetings on the International Day of Yoga, he said the ancient science of yoga is India’s great gift to the world.

Glad to see more and more people adopting it, he tweeted and shared some of his pictures in which he is seen performing yoga.

Other leaders like Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu also stressed that people should be physically and mentally healthy to put up a united fight against the novel coronavirus as humanity cannot allow the pandemic to get the better of it.

Yoga is a relatively low-risk, high-yield approach to improving overall health and its full potential must be harnessed,” he said addressing an event to mark the International Day of Yoga.

Union AYUSH Minister Shripad Naik claimed Yoga practitioners have less chances of getting infected by coronavirus.

“I am sure that propagation of yoga across the country and the world during the Modi-led government’s tenure has helped in a big way to fight back COVID-19. Those who are practicing yoga have less chances of getting infected with COVID-19, the minister claimed.

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Printable version | Aug 10, 2020 3:23:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/international-day-of-yoga-yoga-is-helping-covid-19-patients-says-narendra-modi/article31880876.ece

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