United States

International Day Of Yoga: Thousands Gather For Yoga Celebration At Times Square

The Consulate General of India in New York, in collaboration with the Times Square Alliance, organised a day-long yoga event at Times Square, drawing around 10,000 participants to celebrate the 10th International Day of Yoga.

The 10th International Day of Yoga saw a grand celebration at Times Square.

New York City witnessed a grand celebration of yoga on Thursday during the 'Solstice at Times Square' event. The day-long celebration drew a large number of participants, showcasing the widespread enthusiasm for yoga in the city. The event was part of the lead-up to the International Day of Yoga.

In a press release, the Consulate General of India in New York announced, "In partnership with the Times Square Alliance, we celebrated the 10th International Day of Yoga at the iconic Times Square on June 20, 2024."

The event featured seven yoga sessions throughout the day, attracting about 10,000 participants from various nationalities. The Consul General of India in New York, Binaya Pradhan, welcomed the participants and highlighted the numerous benefits of yoga for physical health and spiritual well-being. He emphasised yoga's role in promoting harmony with nature.

Pradhan expressed his joy at the turnout, saying, "Today, we are celebrating International Day of Yoga at Times Square with the Times Square Alliance. We expect around 8,000 to 10,000 participants. This year's theme, 'Yoga for self and society,' will inspire everyone here and across the US."

The Indian Consulate General in New York also revealed plans for a month-long celebration of International Day of Yoga in states under its jurisdiction, including New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Connecticut. These events have been well received, drawing active participation from yoga enthusiasts.

The International Day of Yoga, now in its 10th year, is celebrated under the theme 'Yoga for self and society.' The United Nations adopted a resolution to celebrate the day on June 21, the Summer Solstice, following a proposal by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014. Since 2015, the day has been marked globally, raising awareness about the multifaceted benefits of yoga.

In Washington, DC, the Indian Embassy organised a yoga session at The Wharf, drawing a large crowd. Deputy Ambassador Sripriya Ranganathan highlighted India's role in bringing yoga to the forefront and stressed its enduring relevance.

"The role that India has played in bringing this to the center stage, taking it to the UN, and making it a day to recognise the power of yoga is significant," Ranganathan said. "Yoga is an ancient wellness tradition that goes back 5000-6000 years but remains very contemporary."

Ranganathan noted that the appreciation for yoga has grown, making it an integral part of families, communities, and institutions. She observed that young people and students in the US are increasingly involved in yoga, initially for physical fitness but quickly embracing its holistic benefits.