India's Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Asoke Mukerji gave out details of International Day of Yoga celebrations at a press conference on June 17. - Photo/ Jay Mandal
Speaking with the media on the preparations of International Day of Yoga

NEW YORK CITY (TIP): Massive preparations are underway to commemorate the first International Day of Yoga on Sunday, June 21 at the United Nations and other locations in New York.

Giving out details of the celebration of the first International Day of Yoga on June 21, India’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Ambassador Asoke Mukerji, on June 17, told the media that the headline event will be at the UN headquarters where India’s external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj will be joined by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, President of the General Assembly Sam Kutesa, Indian spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and several other diplomats.

Mukerji said 256 cities in 192 counties, including Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Malaysia will be celebrating the first annual day of Yoga.

It is estimated that “two billion (people) will have participated by the end of June 21 in commemorating the yoga day,” Mukerji added.

He said Swaraj will reach New York on Saturday and will preside over the two-hour commemoration next day at the world body to be attended by hundreds, including school children from India and the UN International School.

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He added that Swaraj will be representing India as the country which had initiated the idea of having an annual international yoga day.

Swaraj, along with the UN Chief and the UNGA President, would then head to Times Square where an estimated 30,000 people would perform Yoga and where the UN celebrations would also be broadcast live on the giant screens.

Swaraj is also expected to attend a lecture and demonstration of Yoga at the Hindu Temple Society of North American and at an event at Lincoln Centre featuring Sri Sri Ravi Shankar.

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