Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who led International Yoga Day celebrations Tuesday, called for using yoga to fight diabetes.
“With the help of yoga, diabetes can be controlled, if not cured. There is a need to start a campaign spreading awareness among common people suffering from diabetes,” Modi said at Chandigarh’s Capitol Complex, where he performed yoga with 30,000 others.
It was an event that had come under threat following a heavy downpour on Monday. Rainwater had soaked through the green carpets and the 30,000 mats laid out across 12 lakh square feet.
A team of 500 workers led by Chandigarh UT officials worked through the night to dry the complex, making it ready just in time. Teams from various departments used four high-capacity suction machines mounted on trucks, and handheld vacuum pumps, and massive sponges and buckets, besides digging channels .
The PM called for focus in the next one year on steps to mitigate diabetes through yoga. “We should address one disease every year and run a public campaign with an aim to address that disease,” he said. Linking Yoga Day to health, Modi said it has become a mass movement. He said that with a zero budget, yoga provides health assurance, and does not discriminate between rich and poor. “Yoga is not only a way to get rid of a disease but it also guarantees wellness. For holistic development of lives, yoga is a great way,” Modi said.
The Prime Minister announced two awards, one for excellence in promotion of yoga within the country, and another for a similar effort at the international level. “Anyone, be it an individual or an organisation, will be eligible for it and the awards will be given to the recipients on the next Yoga Day,” Modi said.