It was more a display of enthusiasm than skill as more than 20 people turned out to participate in an evening yoga session at the Indian pavilion at the climate change conference in Bonn.
The Indian pavilion has decided to hold a daily yoga session, starting today, under the supervision of a trained instructor for one hour in the evening. It had invited everyone to participate. Many of the participants seemed to be performing yoga exercises for the first time and the instructor explained to them not just how to perform the exercises but also the likely benefits accruing from the postures.
Several people had gathered around the Indian pavilion at the appointed time but not all could be accommodated due to space constraints. The organisers have decided to arrange for extra yoga mats from tomorrow so that more people can participate.
The pavilion is the area where India showcases all the actions it is taking on climate change. It is also where a number of India-related side events are held. India has been installing a pavilion since the 2015 climate change conference in Paris. This would be the first time that a yoga session has been planned at the Indian pavilion.
The yoga sessions at the climate conference are part of Narendra Modi government’s efforts to popularise yoga internationally. In 2015, the UN had accepted a resolution moved by India to declare June 21 as the International Yoga Day. Every year since then, yoga sessions are organised throughout the world on June 21. Modi has himself been participating in one of those sessions.