Jaipur: Amidst opposition in some quarters to observing International Yoga Day, VHP International Executive President Praveen Togadia on Monday said that the discipline was never secular and was more of “Vedic and Sanatan”.
He also said that Surya Namaskar was an essential part of the exercise form and no performance of yoga was complete without it.
“Om and Surya Namaskar, two exercises of yoga, are very necessary and without them, yoga is incomplete,” Togadia told reporters at a VHP event here.
The Hindu right-wing leader leader further said that “yoga was never secular, it is more ‘Vedic and sanatan’ (ancient)”.
“Namaj and yoga are two different things. Those who do not want Om and Surya Namaskar, they should practise only gym activity for better health,” he said.
“Those who want to live healthy life should opt for yoga, and those who want to commit suicide (not better life) could avoid it,” he warned.
He also said that VHP would not allow any changes to be introduced in yoga exercises.
On the sidelines of a state-level training event, Togadia added that five lakh health ambassadors would be trained under a VHP programme over the next three years. He also said that similar training programmes would be launched in 300 cities.
After several Muslim groups expressed reservations against offering ‘surya namaskar’ and reciting Sanskrit ‘slokas’ during the yoga ‘asanas’ to be performed during the June 21 International Yoga day event on Rajpath in New Delhi, the government had decided not to include ‘surya namaskar’ and ‘om’ chanting in the set of ‘asanas’ to be performed during the official celebrations.