CHIEF MINISTER Shivraj Singh Chouhan announced here on Thursday that Madhya Pradesh Government will constitute a Yoga Council and incorporate yoga teaching in physical education syllabi in the State’s schools.
Institutions engaged in popularising yoga will get necessary facilities to set up a centre in the State for the purpose. Besides, a Rs one-lakh award will be given for outstanding work towards popularising yoga, said Chouhan at Tatya Tope Stadium during the mass Surya Namaskar programme.
Announcing the yoga policy, Chouhan said Government would conduct regular programmes to popularise yoga. To this end, he added, trainers would be selected and imparted necessary training.
Recalling Swami Vivekanand’s exhortation for a health body, the Chief Minister urged school children to perform yoga regularly as it has personal as well as social benefits.
Telecast and aired across the State from the main venue at the Tatya Tope Stadium, more than 50-lakh school children across the State participated in the controversial State-sponsored Surya Namaskar and Pranayam.
Official sources added that over 9,000 children from 43 schools took part in the main function at Bhopal.
Made voluntary by a High Court order on Wednesday, the mass exercise began with recitation of ‘Vande Mataram’. Numbers were chanted with each posture of the Surya Namaskar instead of the mantra. Muslim organisations had taken strong exception to the Government’s earlier circular in this regard which not only made the exercise mandatory but also provided for chanting mantra, invoking the Sun with each of the 10 postures.
Ministers and BJP leaders also joined in the Surya Namaskar at various places. Barring a stray incident of a sixth-standard student fainting at a school at Shahdol, the event remained smooth elsewhere. Some Muslim organisations staged a demonstration at Iqbal Maidan, Bhopal, as a token protest against the programme.