India

Yoga Day: Thousands of Indians celebrate the day

Indian yoga practitioners participate in a mass yoga session on International Yoga Day in New Delhi on June 21, 2019. Image copyright Getty Images

Indians across the country celebrated the fifth international yoga day on Friday.

Temperatures are soaring in many cities, including the capital Delhi, but that didn't stop people from gathering outdoors and stretching and bending their way through at least an hour of yoga.

And the event attracted all kinds of participants - even the dog unit of the Indian army!

Dogs doing yoga with Indian army Image copyright @SpokespersonMoD/Twitter

The Indo-Tibetan border police - and their dogs and horses - were not about to be outdone. They practised what they called yoga, doga and hoga.

And they were luckier than many of their counterparts - they got to practise their yoga in cooler climes, along India's scenic Himalayan border.

Dogs and horses doing yoga alongside Indo-Tibetan border police Image copyright ITBPofficial

Among those who did yoga in a more challenging climate were the armed forces on board the naval aircraft carrier INS Viraat which is docked off the coastline of sweltering Mumbai city.

Indian Armed Forces personnel take part in a yoga sesssion to mark International Yoga Day on the Indian Navy aircraft carrier INS Viraat anchored at the Mumbai harbour on June 21, 2017 Image copyright Getty Images

In Gujarat, the soldiers got a little more creative with their yoga.

Presentational white space
Presentational white space

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is known to be a yoga enthusiast, also practiced along with a crowd of some 40,000 people in Jharkhand state.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi performs yoga during a mass yoga event on International Yoga Day in Ranchi in eastern Jharkhand state June 21, 2019. Image copyright Getty Images

"We should make efforts to take yoga from cities to villages and tribal areas. Yoga is above religion, caste, colour, gender and region - it is above everything," Mr Modi said at the main event, which kicked off celebrations.

The Indian prime minister was spotted doing stretches, bends and breathing exercises in Ranchi, the state's capital city.

Some practitioners took part in a yoga session at the 15th Century Adalaj stepwell in the western state of Gujarat.

Indian yoga practitioners take part in a yoga session on International Yoga Day at the 15th century Adalaj Stepwell in Adalaj, some 40km from Ahmedabad in western Gujarat state, on June 21, 2019. Image copyright Getty Images

Here, people practised yoga in Jammu, in the disputed Himalayan state of Jammu and Kashmir.

Yoga practitioners perform yoga during the International Day of Yoga, in Jammu, the winter capital of Kashmir, India, 21 June 2019. The United Nations (UN) has declared 21 June as the International Yoga Day after adopting a resolution proposed by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi"s government. Image copyright EPA

At the other end of the sub-continent, in Tamil Nadu, large numbers turned out to mark the day on a beach in the state capital Chennai.

Indian children along with yoga enthusiasts take part in a yoga session to mark International Yoga Day on a beach in Chennai on June 21, 2019. - Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi led the way for International Yoga Day on June 21, performing sun salutations and other flexible feats in a mass session with an estimated 30,000 other devotees of the discipline. Image copyright Getty Images

Tens of thousands of people took part in cities and towns all over India.

.

More on this story