International Yoga Day 2018 highlights: Yoga transcends religion, politics, says VP Venkaiah Naiduhttps://indianexpress.com/article/india/international-yoga-day-live-updates-narendra-modi-bjp-celebrations-dehradun-5226447/

International Yoga Day 2018 highlights: Yoga transcends religion, politics, says VP Venkaiah Naidu

International Yoga Day 2018 HIGHLIGHTS: Prime Minister Narendra Modi performed Yoga with over 50,000 enthusiasts in Dehradun to celebrate the day. A series of yoga-related events are also being organised across the world to mark the occasion. Get the latest news here

Prime Minister Narendra Modi performs yoga along with thousands of enthusiasts to mark International Day of Yoga in Dehradun (AP)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday performed yoga with over 50,000 enthusiasts at the Forest Research Institute campus and underlined the country’s role in promoting yoga and that India should be honoured to be the “guardians of the great practice.” Addressing the large gathering Modi said, “While many powers in the world divide us, yoga unites us. It gives peace to an individual. Instead of further animosity, Yoga assimilates.”

The participants at Dehradun event include Baba Ramdev’s Haridwar-based Patanjali Yogpeeth, Haridwar-based Shanti Kunj, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s Art of Living, participants from the “spiritual organisation” Brahma Kumaris, and yoga practitioners from Swami Chidanand Saraswati’s Rishikesh-based Parmarth Niketan.

Meanwhile, Environment Minister Dr.Harsh Vardhan, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and LG Anil Baijal led the celebrations at Delhi’s Rajghat. Union ministers Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari, Suresh Prabhu, Uma Bharti, Ram Vilas Paswan, Ravi Shankar Prasad are taking part in yoga events in Lucknow, Nagpur, Chennai, Rudraprayag, Hajipur and Patna respectively. Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu along with Maharashtra Chief Minister M Venkaiah Naidu participated in an event in Mumbai.

In Pictures | Yoga Day celebrations: From one stretch to another, across the country

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi is leading India's celebrations on International Yoga Day. Read highlights

Mamata Banerjee extends wishes on Yoga Day

Nitish Kumar’s JDU again skips International Yoga Day celebrations

While the BJP is out in full strength to participate in events held to mark the fourth International Yoga Day on Thursday, the Janata Dal(U), its ally in Bihar, has decided to skip the celebrations — for the third year in a row.

The Bihar Chief Minister, in an indirect reference to the BJP last year, had said yoga was being used as a publicity tool and that it can fetch votes for the party. “Yoga vyaktigat cheez hai, prachaar wala yog alag hai aur karne wala yog alag hai. Jo log yog karte hain kum se kum apne top leaders ko bhi yog karwayen. Yog se bhi vote ka bhog dekh rahe hain (Yoga is a personal thing. The one done for publicity is different from the one done for exercise. People who perform yoga should make their top leaders do it. We can see yoga can bring votes).” Kumar, was then in a coalition government with the RJD and the Congress before he decided to break the ‘Grand Alliance’ and partner with NDA. Read more 

Cartoon by Mika Aziz

Karnataka CM Kumaraswamy marks Yoga Day at his residence

IAF officials do yoga in the air, perform vayu-namakskar, vayu-padmasan

Guinness World Record created!

Yoga an ancient Indian tradition, part of humanity’s intangible heritage: President Kovind

President Ram Nath Kovind will mark the day with his Suriname counterpart in Paramaribo. "On #InternationalYogaDay greetings to all those practising yoga across the globe. Yoga is an ancient Indian tradition, but it doesn’t belong to India alone. It is part of humanity’s intangible heritage. I invite you to explore and celebrate yoga wherever you are. I look forward to participating in the Yoga Day celebrations with President Bouterse in Paramaribo, Suriname. This is the first time two heads of state will be celebrating International Yoga Day together," he wrote on Twitter

Embassy of France rolls out yoga mats to mark the day

The Embassy of France in New Delhi practised asanas to mark the International Yoga Day on Thursday. The colour of the Yoga mats and the t-shirts represent the national flag of France. Express Photo by Abhinav Saha

Baba Ramdev joins Rajasthan CM Vasundhara Raje in Kota

Elaborate security arrangements made for Yoga Day at Rajpath

In wake of yoga day, Elaborate security arrangements have been put in the National Capital. More than 500 police and paramilitary personnel have been deployed to keep an eye on suspicious elements.

The Delhi Traffic Police has issued an advisory asking motorists to avoid Rafi Marg, Janpath, Man Singh Road, Maulana Azad Road, Rajpath (between Vijay Chowk and Man Singh crossing), Krishna Menon Marg, K Kam Raj Marg and Rajender Prasad Road till 10 am today. The advisory asked motorists to take alternate routes -- Ring Road, Mathura Road, Bhairon Marg, Subramaniam Bharti Marg, Rajesh Pilot Marg, Dr Abdul Kalam Road, Tuglak Road, Mother Teresa Crescent Marg to travel from south to north and vice-versa, and from east to west and vice-versa.

In Delhi, eight events have been planned in the national capital with the main celebration being held in the Connaught Place.

Surya Namaskar at an height of 18,000 feet in Ladakh

Yoga transcends religious, political lines; should be a part of daily life: VP Naidu

Adding that yoga has nothing to do with religion, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu said, "I want it to become a people's movement because it is not something political or religious, it is for the betterment of our lives. It shouldn't be just for one day, it should be a part of our daily lives."

Let us pledge to practice yoga everyday: Piyush Goyal

Yoga is an example of our Prime Minister’s cultural diplomacy: Rajnath Singh

Home Minister Rajnath Singh who joined the yoga enthusiasts in Lucknow emphasised on Prime Minister Modi's role in popularising yoga around the world. "Today the entire world is celebrating Yoga day. Yoga’s popularity and acceptability is spreading around the world cutting across the continents and religious lines. When India moved the resolution for International Yoga Day in the United Nations, it was supported by many Muslim member countries as well. Yoga is an example of our Prime Minister’s cultural diplomacy," he added. 

Yoga is an art of living, a way of being, says UNESCO

ITBP personnel practice 'River Yoga'

Vijay Rupani leads yoga day celebrations in Gujarat

(Express photo by Javed Raja)

Maharashtra Governor joins celebration

VP Venkaiah Naidu, Devendra Fadnavis practice yoga in Mumbai

Express photo by Nirmal Harindran

Smriti Irani on Yoga day calls for cherishing 'timeless heritage'

Chandigarh residents participate in celebrations at dumping ground

Express photo Sahil Walia

Yoga Day will enhance the tourism potential of Uttarakhand: CM Trivendra Singh

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Rawat said that Modi’s presence in Dehradun on Yoga Day will give the state the “much-needed recognition as a yoga destination”. This, he said, will eventually enhance the tourism potential of the state. Thanking Prime Minister Modi for choosing Uttarakhand to kick-start the celebration, Uttarakhand CM Rawat said, "Modi ji, you have a special connection with Uttarakhand. Uttarakhand is happy to host the celebrations.

Navy joins the celebration

Yoga enthusiasts at Forest Research Institute (FRI), Dehradun

Yoga has perfect soluion to all problems: PM Modi

"Yoga is beautiful because it is ancient yet modern, it is constant yet evolving. It has the best of our past and presents and a ray of hope for our future. In yoga, we have the perfect solution to the problems we face, either as individuals or in our society. The way to lead a calm, creative and content life is Yoga. Instead of dividing, Yoga unites. Instead of further animosity, Yoga assimilates. Instead of increasing suffering, Yoga heals," Modi said in Dehradun

India should be honoured to be 'guardians' of yoga: PM Modi in Dehradun

Talking about India's role in promoting yoga, PM Modi said the country should be honoured to be the "guardians of the great practice." "We should be proud of our culture. On the contrary, if we doubt our tradition and culture then the world will not put it's faith in us," Modi added.

Yoga unites us, brings us happiness and peace: Prime Minister Modi

Emphasising on the power of yoga and its global reach, Prime Minister Modi said, "From Dehradun to Dublin, from Shanghai to Chicago, from Jakarta to Johannesburg, there's just yoga The practice of yoga is making better each life (across the world). While many powers in the world divide us, yoga unites us. It gives peace to an individual. It brings happiness and peace to the lives of its practitioners. It is these happy and peaceful people who will make the society, so yoga can lead to a happy and peaceful society.

India is Yoga's top ambassador: Prime Minister Modi

"Yoga is beautiful because it is ancient yet modern, it is constant yet evolving. It has the best of our past and presents and a ray of hope for our future. In Yoga, we have the perfect solution to the problems we face, either as individuals or in our society. India is Yoga's top ambassador," Prime Minister Modi said. 

Yoga is India's gift to the world: PM Modi

Addressing the crowd on the occasion, Modi said, "Yoga is India's gift to the world. It is a passport for wellness. The world has embraced Yoga and glimpses of this can be seen in the manner in which International Day of Yoga has been marked every year. Infact, Yoga Day has become one of the biggest mass movements in the quest for good health and well-being."

Welcome to the live blog. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is leading India's celebrations on International Yoga Day. Follow this space to get latest news

“Yoga is not just a set of exercises that keeps the body fit. It is a passport to health assurance, a key to fitness and wellness. Nor is Yoga only what you practice in the morning. Doing your day-to-day activities with diligence and complete awareness is a form of Yoga as well,” a statement quoting Modi said.