The celebration of the First International Yoga Day constituted a motive of joy for the whole world, which happily included three Caribbean nations: Cuba, Dominican Republic, and Haiti.
In Havana, it was celebrated in full colors for two days, that is, June 20th and 21st. The Indian Embassy in Havana, along with the Cuban Yoga Association, celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, made of this celebration a huge event that, besides taking place in Havana, was extended to different provinces, such as Matanzas, Cienfuegos, Holguín, and Santiago de Cuba.
Sports icons, members of the Cuban Yoga Association, who came from far eastern provinces like Holguín and Santiago de Cuba, representatives from the Cuban government and the diplomatic corps, and public in general, enthused the event with their participation both days.
The festivity included rigorous yoga lessons for diverse levels, as well as workshops, and exchange of experiences, particularly those in which yoga had played a key role in changing someone’s life. At the same time, the results of a yoga contest, conducted in advance all along the country, were delivered and the award ceremony was carried out on this special occasion.
Earlier, PM Modi’s message was transmitted and the 35-minute yoga protocol designed for the event was instructed by Eduardo Pimentel, founder and current President of the Cuban Yoga Association.
As pointed out by Ambassador C. Rajasekhar during the event, there is a close relationship between yoga and the main objectives of the Cuban health system, since both of them focus on human wellbeing through the individual’s spiritual and emotional stability and prevention.
In the case of Dominican Republic, the event was hosted at Santo Domingo’s Botanical Gardens/Plaza de Espania on the 21st of June from 9.00 am to 4.00 pm open to all public.
Participants numbered several hundreds, including business leaders, senior government officials, senior functionaries of the academia, and members of the diplomatic and consular corps.
The event was widely covered by the local media that grandiosely commented on it.
Haiti, on its side, hosted two main events: one at India Formed Police Unit - 2 Camp, operating under United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) at the state capital city of Port-au-Prince (8.30 – 9.45 am), and the other at the leafy Karibe Hotel, Port-Au-Prince (11.00 am – 2.00 pm), both on June 21st.
The first event, exclusively organized for the uniformed men, counted with the participation of a total of 115 peace keepers. In the second event, which was open to all, around 200 people joined, among them several business leaders, senior government officials, senior functionaries of the academia, and members of the diplomatic and consular corps.