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“Yogashchittavrittinirodahah” – International Day of Yoga 2016

‘Yogaha Chitta Vritti Nirodahah’ – goes the age old Sanskrit saying which literally translates to “Yoga is the mastery of the activities of the mind-field.” A science which bloomed at an age where modern science was unknown, and a practice that was the reason the ancient Indians led long, healthy lives, recently came into primary focus after many countries backed the idea of having one day in the year exclusively for the preaching and practice of this ancient exercise and this led to the birth of the International Day of Yoga with its inaugural celebration on the 21st of June, last year.

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A year since, the fervor for this day has not died down as many organizations, both governmental and private, came together to celebrate this day. Manipal University wasn’t any different. In the heart of the holiday season when most students are back home enjoying their vacations, the campus is mostly quiet. But on the morning of June 21st, the usually empty KC started showing some signs of activity. As the sun rose and the rains poured down heavier than before engulfing the university town in a foggy mist, the number of people heading toward the Food Court from places in and around the campus increased steadily and before you know it, the spacious ground floor of the Food Court was completely filled with men, women and children of all ages.

13445408_639417192903663_7779549667580872719_n The activities of the day began with the the faculty and students, Division of Yoga, Center for Integrative Medicine and Research, Manipal University and the Officers, PI Staff and cadets of the 4 KAR ENGR COY NCC who were part of the organizing committee welcoming all attendees. Arrangements for the T-Shirt distribution, registration of the participants was taken up by the cadre and the demonstration program that began at 8 AM chaperoned by the Division of Yoga.

An hour long yoga demonstration and practice session was attended by about 300 attendees including students and staff of the Academy of General Education and Manipal University. Students of MSc. Yoga Therapy at Division of Yoga demonstrated different Yoga ‘aasanas’ and the participants, which included Dr. GK Prabhu, Director, MIT Manipal, Dr. Kempraj, Director, Dept. of Physical Education, MIT Manipal, Dr. Narayan Shenoy, Associate Director, Student Welfare, MIT Manipal among many others, practiced yoga in a serene, still environment; the silence synchronizing with the harmonic sound of the rains outside. The session was followed by breakfast arranged at the 1st floor of the food court drawing Phase 1 of the day’s activities to a close.

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Phase 2, which began at 10 AM at MIT Central Library Auditorium had the formal and cultural function Yoga Deepti which, despite heavy, incessant rains, was attended by more than 300 members of the staff and student fraternity of Manipal University and around. Dr. N Udupa, Director-Research, (Health Sciences), MUSRF welcomed the guests and the invitees of the function. The blessings of the almighty were invoked in a unique manner with Mr. Bhushan Kumar, MSc. Yoga Therapy Student, Division of Yoga, CIMR, Manipal University performing yoga aasanas. Dr. HS Ballal, Pro-Chancellor, Manipal University was the Chief Guest for the function and he, along with the Guests of Honour, Dr. Narayan Sabhahit, Registrar, Manipal University and Dr. GK Prabhu, Director, MIT Manipal lit the lamp to inaugurate the program.

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Dr. HS Ballal, the Chief Guest of the day, gave a very witty inaugural address that set the mood for the function. Following this, was an informative session on Yoga and the idea of Yoga by the President of the organizing committee, HOD of Division of Yoga, Dr. Annapoorna Upadhyaya.

Dr. Ganapathy Joisa, the former HOD, Division of Yoga was felicitated on this joyous occasion celebrating his 3 decade long service to Manipal University and he shared his experiences as a student of Yoga with all present.

13442139_639417306236985_5262243086965306573_nVarious competitions were conducted by the Division of Yoga on account of the International Day of Yoga and the prize winners of these competitions were awarded in the session that followed. The function drew to a close with a group yoga performance from the students of Division of Yoga followed by the vote of thanks by Associate NCC Officer, Dr. Poornachandra Pandit.

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The function was a tremendous success that reflected the interest in Yoga as proved by the huge attendance despite it having rained heavily since the night before. The vision and brainchild of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the International Day of Yoga is sure to reach greater heights in the years to come, gaining more and more participation and recognition worldwide.

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