Sports minister Mandaviya welcomes PT Usha’s move to get Yoga into Asian Games

New Delhi: The Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports, Mansukh Mandaviya has thrown his weight behind the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) president P.T Usha in her proposal to include Yoga in the Asian Games sports programme as a competitive event. “It is only fair that in keeping with its wide popularity, Yoga has become a competitive sport and is in the Asian Games,” he said.

The IOA chief wrote to the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) president Randhir Singh on June 26, to consider the proposal to include Yoga as a sport in Asian Games.

“Prime Minister Narendra Modi has worked hard to ensure that June 21 is celebrated as International Yoga Day each year. The discipline, which embraces the mind and body has gained in popularity around the world and is ready as a competitive sport with its code of points and distinct events,” Mansukh Mandaviya said.

“India has been in the forefront of making Yoga popular and we started it as a competitive sport by including it in the Khelo India Youth Games with great success. It is pleasing to note that the growing number of Yoga practitioners has encouraged organisers of National Games to include it in their schedule,” he said.

The Government of India through its different initiatives has promoted Yoga as a competitive sport as well, along with it being an art & science of healthy living.

The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports has granted recognition to Yogasana Bharat for the promotion and development of Yogasana as a competitive sport in India. Additionally, Yogasana has been added as a competitive discipline over the last many editions of Khelo India Youth Games & Khelo India University Games since 2020, the Ministry informed in a release on Friday.

It is also learnt that Asian Yoganasa, a recognised body by World Yogasana, has already written to OCA for affiliation so that Yogasana can be developed as a competitive sport across the continent.

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