Varanasi celebrates first #YogaDay with immense enthusiasm
Children, youth, women take part in mass yoga demonstrations in Varanasi
Spiritual capital Kashi does Yogasanas on first #YogaDay

It was not only New Delhi’s Rajpath that turned into ‘Yog-path’ on June 21st. Varanasi also witnessed participation in large numbers. From the Ganga Ghats to narrow lanes, parks to the community centres, people took to mats to perform various ‘asanas’ and make the first ever Yoga Day event a tremendous success. Thousands of people assembled in PM Narendra Modi’s constituency and formed a part of mass yoga demonstrations. Enthusiasm grasped the people on this day.

Yoga competitions were held in various schools and colleges and special camps were put up in the colonies. Excited about the Yoga day, children, youth and even women formed a part of the demonstrations taking place throughout the towns and villages of Varanasi.

Students turned out to be one of the most active participants. It was a pleasant sight at the Banaras Hindu University (BHU) campus. Students, teachers and even officers participated in the mass yoga demonstrations. More than two thousand cadets bent, stretched and practiced various asanas under the guidance of yoga-gurus.

A massive turnout was seen in PM Narendra Modi’s adopted village of Jayapur as well. The excitement there was such that people started congregating since five in the morning. Social institutions organised camps for the villagers. They practiced various asanas in the Panchayat Bhavan of the village.

Shri Kalraj Mishra, Union Minister for micro, small and medium enterprises, along with other BJP karyakartas led yoga movement in Varanasi. Volunteers too turned up for the Yoga event. Special arrangements were made in various government offices and complexes. People came together and practiced yoga postures to make the first Yoga day event a huge success.

Temsutula Imsong, who is an active participant of Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in Kashi, along with other volunteers and youngsters joined in for the International Day of Yoga at Babua Ghat.

Art of Living Foundation, founded by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar too held Yoga camps in Varanasi.

On 11th of December, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) declared June 21st as the ‘International Day of Yoga.’ The moment was historic as 177 countries collectively co-sponsored India’s recommendation on the world stage. Yoga that has its roots in India received a global recognition.

Kashi has always been known as the spiritual capital of India. It is of course, well-known for its Ganga Ghats and other holy attractions. But since ancient times, Yoga too has always been an integral part in the lives of people of Kashi (Varanasi). As the world came together to celebrate the first International Day of Yoga, Varanasi, was also gripped in the Yoga Day celebrations. People from all walks of life turned out in large numbers early in the morning to practice ‘Yogasanas.’ From youngsters to the elders, children to women, government officers to social organisations –the people of Varanasi left no stone unturned to convert the first International Day of Yoga into a grand celebration.


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State Visit of Prime Minister to Rwanda, Uganda and South Africa (July 23-27, 2018)
July 23, 2018

Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, will pay a State Visit to Republic of Rwanda (23-24 July), Republic of Uganda (24-25 July) and Republic of South Africa (25-27 July). This will be the first visit by an Indian Prime Minister to Rwanda and the first visit by our Prime Minister to Uganda in over 20 years. The visit to South Africa is in the context of BRICS Summit.

Prime Minister’s official engagement in Rwanda and Uganda include bilateral meetings with the Presidents, delegation level talks and meetings with the business and the Indian communities. In Rwanda, Prime Minister will visit the Genocide Memorial and participate in an event on "Girinka” (one cow per family), a national social protection scheme of Rwanda personally initiated by President Paul Kagame. In Uganda, Prime Minister will deliver a Keynote address at the Parliament of Uganda – the first Indian Prime Minister to address the Ugandan Parliament.

In South Africa, the Prime Minister will have bilateral meeting with the South African President and will attend the BRICS Summit and other BRICS related meetings. Bilateral meetings with participating countries on the sidelines of BRICS meetings are also planned.

India shares close, warm and friendly relations with Africa which are cemented by robust development partnership and a large presence of the Indian Diaspora. A number of agreements and MoUs in the areas of Defence, trade, culture, Agriculture and Dairy cooperation are scheduled to be signed during the visit.

Over the last few years, there has been a significant intensification of our engagement in various fields with African countries and there have been as many as 23 outgoing visits to Africa at the level of President, Vice President and Prime Minister in the last four years. Africa has been the top priority of India’s Foreign Policy. The visit of Prime Minister to Rwanda, Uganda and South Africa will further strengthen our relations with the African continent.