When he joined the police service, Yadvinder Singh had never thought even in his dreams that one day he will become a yoga trainer. Fifteen years in the service and now working as an ASI in Mansa, Yadvinder is better known as yoga trainer of policemen.
“I joined the service in 1990 during the peak days of terrorism in Bathinda as a constable. The job took a toll on me and I started drinking to bust the stress. Soon, it became a habit and it started affecting my family life,” said Singh.
But how come yoga became a part of his life?
“One day, my eldest son expressed concern over my attitude and deteriorating health. He said that I have changed as a father and it made me realise my mistake and then I started looking for a change,” said Singh, who turned 45 last year and has two sons. During 2005-06, he travelled to different religious destinations to seek peace of mind but failed.
Later, he started training in yoga and studied to get a master’s degree in 2008-10. “Yoga gave me peace and things worked out well for me and my family. I would take leave from office to attend yoga programmes. I did a postgraduate course in yoga from Jain Vishwa University, Rajasthan. Huge credit also goes to my department for what I am now,” said Yadvinder.
Now, he conducts yoga camp for his colleagues every year. “Former SSP Mansa Ram Singh and MF Farooqi encouraged me a lot to conduct such programmes. I have conducted yoga camps for jail inmates in Bathinda and Mansa. A similar camp was held in de-addiction centre in the district.”
But turning into a yoga guru was not a cakewalk for this policeman. “Initially, I was ridiculed by my colleagues. But my sole intention was to free them of stress and alcohol addiction. I wanted an image makeover of police as yoga brings discipline in life,” he said.Many senior officers in the police are his pupils.
Yadvinder’ house is known as Yog Bhawan in the city and his wife, who is a schoolteacher, also works as a yoga trainer. His 10-year-old son knows all the technicalities of yoga.
However, Yadvinder feels that yoga should not be treated as a business. “Now-a-days, yoga camps are serving too many purposes. You gain political affiliation if you have followers in numbers. I feel pained when I see this trend in the society. I don’t treat anyone as my guru though there are several mentors whom I look up to,” he added.
He has received appreciation and accolades from different organisations but doesn’t want to turn into a professional yoga guru. “I want to help the society. I have even conducted camp in UP and people have attended in good number. I now want to pursue PhD in Yoga.”