'Yoga event brought rain to Delhi': Top quotes on International Yoga Day

  • Simar Bhasin, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jun 22, 2015 06:29 IST

International Yoga Day was marked not just by millions performing asanas at landmark locations across the world on Sunday, but also with claims and jibes by political leaders across the spectrum.

From Prime Minister Narendra Modi dubbing Rajpath as Yogpath, to RJD leader Lalu Prasad making fun of overweight BJP leaders, to BJP leader Kiran Bedi claiming that yoga sessions brought rain in Delhi -- there were some gems on television and on Twitter.

Here are our top picks -

Narendra Modi: "Did anybody ever think that Rajpath can become Yogpath," Prime Minister Narendra Modi who led the world record yoga sessions in Delhi asked a receptive audience,

Urging the crowd not to see yoga day celebrations as mere tokenism, he said "We are not only celebrating a day but we are training the human mind to begin a new era of peace, 'Sadbhavana'".

And he had a word of caution for those who see Yoga as just a way of getting into shape: "Yoga is not just for contorting your body into shapes. If that were true, people working in the circus would be called yogis."

Lalu Prasad: Most vocal among those who called yoga day celebrations a mere PR stunt was RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav.

"Amit Shah, Narendra Modi, Nitin Gadkari, Devendra Fadnavis, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Venkaiah Naidu, Harsh Vardhan, Giriraj Singh and several others are all obese. They wouldn't have put on so much girth had they been such ardent followers of yoga as they are projecting themselves to be,...Why all this hypocrisy for a day?"

Meenakshi Lekhi: Bharatiya Janata Party's national spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi hit back equally tongue-in-cheek saying: "Lalu ji can also get the benefits of yoga if he practices. He would understand better on the subjects of mental balance, physical balance, emotional balance. I would urge him to practice yoga"

Prakash Javdekar :

Sushma Swaraj: "At a time when ethnic conflicts and extremist violence are threatening to destabilise societies, yoga can serve as the perfect antidote to stem such negative tendencies and move us on the path of harmony and peace,"external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj said in her speech at the UN.

Arvind Kejriwal: "I have been practicing yoga for years. It is a good thing and everyone should do it, it is beneficial. One should not politicise it. It is good for mental concentration," the Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said.

Despite his running battle with the BJP, Kejriwal attended the yoga event, while Congress and even most allies of the ruling party kept away.

Shilpa Shetty: "I don't think it would have been declared as an international event if it had anything to do with religion. Yoga is a pure science," she said at the International Yoga Day celebrations at Sree Kanteerava Stadium.

Kiran Bedi: The cherry on the cake was a tweet by the former top cop which earned her a lot of ridicule on social media

"Miracle of collective chant of Shanti,Shanti,Shanti, by millions brings pre-monsoon showers in Delhi. Reduces heat and cools even the trees," she tweeted.

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