While Narendra Modi is going to spearhead the mighty Rajpath on June 21st on the eve of International Yoga Day, many performers and practitioners rehearsed yoga a day before, on Saturday.
The rehearsal started at 7 am and concluded at 7:33 am which was also the schedule for the June 21 event.
23 giant LED screens had been put up at the Rajpath for the participants to see the asanas.
"The Minister of State for AYUSH Shripad Naik and various senior officials of the Ministry were also present on the occasion and they also reviewed the preparedness during the rehearsals," a senior AYUSH Ministry official said.
A proper security drill was also conducted by security agencies on the occasion.
The June 21 mega event is expected to see the participation of more than 35,000 people, including government officials, NCC cadets, diplomats and others.
The yoga celebrations are being held in the national capital after the United Nations had in December last year declared June 21 as International Yoga Day, with 177 countries voting in favor.
The proposal had been mooted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his first address to the UN General Assembly in September last year.
On the other hand, two young Muslim girls, Reshma Khatoon and Bismillah Khatton are ready to perform their yoga asanas before BJP chief Amit Shah and, possibly a slew of Union ministers on International Yoga Day.
The teenage yoga experts made the headlines after being chosen to impart yoga lessons to Modi and Shah.
The girls from Lal Saraiya village of West Champaran are hoping that teaching yoga to the BJP chief will be their first step in a long journey.
“Next, I want to give yoga lessons to Prime minister Narendra Modi,” Reshma, at 16 the elder of the girls, told media from Bettiah, the headquarters of West Champaran district located 150 km northwest of Patna.
Bismillah, the Class X student have chosen Pranab Mukherjee as her pupil of choice. “He lives in a big palace in Delhi. I will feel very happy to go there and teach him yoga. It will improve his health”, she said.
“I will begin with Surya Namaskar, teach pranayama and then move on to other yogic asanas,” said Reshma.
Reshma has been practicing yoga since 2012 while Bismillah who is much younger to Reshma started doing from the past five years. Wonder she started practicing yoga at the age of nine.
The two families migrated to West Champaran from the erstwhile East Pakistan during the war of 1971.
“We call the colony yoga village as all the 1,500-odd families residing there know yoga, thanks to the effort of one man, Ashok Sarkar, who also lives there,” said Krishna Mohan Prasad, the head of the West Champaran unit of the Divya Yoga Mandir run by Ramdev’s Patanjali Yogpeeth.
“It is Sarkar, who taught yoga to Reshma and Bismillah, who come from the only two Muslim families in the Bengali settlement,” Prasad said.
"Both girls are highly skilled in yoga and have represented India at international competitions and camps, including those in Australia and South Africa. Yoga doesn't differentiate between human beings on the basis of religion," said Ajit Kumar, in-charge of Patanjali Yogpeeth in Bihar and Jharkhand.