In his address to the United Nations General Assembly on September 27, 2014, Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi urged the world community to adopt an International day of Yoga. Soon thereafter, on December 11, 2014, the 193 member UN General Assembly approved a resolution co-sponsored by a record 177 countries to establish June 21 as the “International Day of Yoga”. The resolution recognises Yoga as a holistic approach to health and well-being. During his visit to France in April 2015, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Francois Hollande signed a Joint Declaration at the Elysée Palace for providing significant visibility to the practice of yoga and allied traditional disciplines in France; and reinforcing the bonds of friendship between India and France through the development of cultural diplomacy.
According to the information given to World News Network the Embassy of India in France has organized 28 events across 20 cities in France and Monaco to celebrate the first International Yoga Day on June 21, 2015. In Paris, the IYD was organized at some of the most iconic venues of the city. The main public event took place at the Grand Halle de la Villette – one of France’s pre-eminent cultural centers. In a fortuitous coincidence the International Yoga Day coincided with the Fête de la Musique, The event at the Grand Halle de la Villette was jointly inaugurated at 11 a.m by His Excellency Mr. Mohan Kumar, Ambassador of India to France, Mr. Didier Fusillier, the new President of La Villette and Mr. Jean-Claude Carrière, an internationally renowned cultural personality. As a fitting tribute, the event commenced with a concert of Indian classical music, followed by yoga and meditation sessions by experienced teachers, set to the soothing strains of classical music. People in excess of 4,000 participated in this event at Grand Halle de la Villette .
Mr. Mohan Kumar, Ambassador of India to France, he said, “I am feeling happy as many people joint us on this “International Yoga Day”. It is a very good elaboration of Indian Culture and Indian Philosophy.”
Another high-visibility event in Paris was the yoga demonstrations on-board the Bateaux-Mouche boat as it made its way past all the bridges of Paris on the Seine. Yoga demonstrations were also organised at the foot of the Eiffel Tower in collaboration with Lolë White, Paris. Synchronised asanas by 2,000 people dressed in white, at the foot of the most-visited monument in the world created a greater awareness of an interest in yoga.