International Yoga Day 2023: Theme, History, and Poster
International Yoga Day 2023 is celebrated every year on June 21st to promote the numerous benefits of practicing yoga. The chosen date coincides with the summer solstice, the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. This day serves as a platform to raise awareness about the holistic approach to well-being that yoga offers. It highlights the importance of finding balance in our fast-paced, modern lives and encourages physical, mental, and spiritual harmony. Yoga fosters mindfulness, stress reduction, and overall health and vitality.
In its 9th edition, this year’s International Day of Yoga will be led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the UN Headquarters on June 21st. This marks the first time a yoga session will be conducted by the Prime Minister at this location.
International Yoga Day Theme
The theme selected for this year’s International Day of Yoga 2023 is “Yoga for Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam,” which represents our shared desire for “One Earth, One Family, One Future.”
International Yoga Day 2023 Poster
International Yoga Day Poster
International Yoga Day Significance
The significance of International Yoga Day is to raise awareness of the many benefits of yoga for physical and mental health. Yoga is a mind-body practice that originated in India thousands of years ago. It combines physical postures, breathing exercises, and meditation. Yoga has been shown to improve flexibility, strength, balance, and endurance. It can also help to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression.
The primary objective of the International Day of Yoga is to raise awareness about yoga as a holistic practice for mental and physical well-being. This observance holds great importance in shedding light on the importance of psychological and physical wellness in today’s world. Furthermore, the day encourages the cultivation of a regular meditation practice to foster mental clarity and self-awareness, essential for thriving in a stress-free environment.
International Yoga Day History
During his speech at the 69th session of the UN General Assembly in 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi put forward the concept of a dedicated yoga day. On December 11, 2014, all 193 member states of the United Nations unanimously agreed to observe the International Day of Yoga on June 21. The inaugural celebration occurred on June 21, 2015. Millions of people around the world participated in yoga events on this day, and the event was widely covered by the media. Since then, International Yoga Day has become a global phenomenon, and it is now celebrated in over 190 countries.
Pakistan’s Economic Crisis Deepens with Dollar Crunch Halting Food Imports
Pakistan is currently facing a severe economic crisis characterized by a shortage of dollars, leading to a complete halt in the import of essential food and beverages. The situation has resulted in thousands of stranded containers at ports, incurring fines and additional charges for traders. The lack of sufficient foreign exchange, which the Pakistan State Bank (PSB) has been unable to provide, has further exacerbated the country’s economic challenges.
Importers Forced to Suspend Imports:
Due to the unavailability of dollars, commercial dealers across the country have been compelled to suspend imports. The Karachi Wholesale Grocers Association Society reported that banks have refused to provide the necessary foreign currency, leaving importers with no choice but to halt shipments. A meeting held by the association concluded that no shipment should be dispatched after June 25.
Depletion of Foreign Reserves:
Pakistan’s dollar crisis can be attributed primarily to the depletion of the country’s foreign reserves over the past year. The economy suffered a significant setback due to devastating floods in northwestern Pakistan, followed by disruptions in oil supplies during the Russia-Ukraine war. These events made it challenging to pay high tariffs on imported oil, contributing to the current crisis.
Political and Economic Challenges:
The economic condition worsened amidst a political crisis that arose when Imran Khan was voted out of office in April 2022. The new Prime Minister, Shehbaz Sharif, faced difficulties in arranging loans, leading to frequent visits to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in search of bailout packages. The political and economic instability has further strained Pakistan’s ability to address the dollar crisis effectively.
High Inflation and Economic Hardships:
Pakistan is currently grappling with a 50-year high inflation rate, pushing a significant portion of its population towards poverty. To alleviate the burden on people amidst skyrocketing prices, the government established centers for the distribution of free wheat flour in April. Unfortunately, stampedes occurred at these centers, resulting in several fatalities and setbacks for the scheme. Pakistan’s high inflation, unemployment, and low GDP growth rates have placed the country at a disadvantage compared to its neighboring nations.
Reliance on Foreign Loans and Debt Repayment:
Pakistan’s economic model heavily relies on foreign loans, making the government dependent on external assistance and exposing the country to the risk of bankruptcy. In the coming years, Pakistan faces the challenge of repaying nearly $80 million in debt, with a significant portion owed to China, a consistent supporter. While recent reports indicate a $1 billion loan from China, the sustainability of such aid remains uncertain.
PM Modi Leads Historic Yoga Session at UNHQ to Celebrate 9th International Day of Yoga
Prime Minister Narendra Modi led a unique yoga session at the United Nations Headquarters on Wednesday, marking the 9th International Day of Yoga. The historic celebration saw the participation of top UN officials, envoys from around the world, and prominent individuals. The event showcased India’s commitment to nurturing traditions that unite and embrace diversity, with a call to eliminate contradictions and obstacles through the practice of yoga.
Unity and Embracing Diversity:
In a video message, Prime Minister Modi emphasized the importance of eliminating contradictions, blockages, and resistances through yoga. He highlighted that yoga strengthens the sense of unity among individuals and expands their inner vision, connecting them with a consciousness that fosters love for all living beings. The prime minister urged the world to present the spirit of ‘Ek Bharat, Shreshtha Bharat’ (One India, Great India) as an example to strive for global unity.
India’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj, described the yoga celebration as a unique occasion, considering Prime Minister Modi’s pivotal role in envisioning and leading International Yoga Day. She noted that the event generated tremendous anticipation and interest, reflecting the global appeal of yoga as an ancient Indian practice that transcends borders and unites people worldwide. Kamboj also highlighted the presence of children performing yoga on stage as a particularly unique aspect of the event.
Yoga’s Universal Appeal:
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres underscored the unifying power of yoga, stating that it brings together the body and mind, humanity and nature, and millions of people across the globe. In a world marked by divisions, yoga’s benefits, such as reducing anxiety and promoting mental well-being, are particularly valuable. Guterres emphasized that yoga reveals our common humanity, fostering unity and encouraging efforts to build a more harmonious world for people, the planet, and ourselves.
The Historic Yoga Session:
The yoga session, held on the North Lawn of the UN Headquarters, took place from 8 to 9 am on June 21. This location is significant as it houses a bust of Mahatma Gandhi, gifted by India to the UN during its presidency of the Security Council in 2022. Prime Minister Modi paid his respects to the bust, which now proudly adorns the UN headquarters. The event was attended by top UN officials, ambassadors, envoys, delegates from Member States, and members of the global and diaspora community.
The Prime Minister-led Yoga Day celebrations witnessed participation from people representing over 180 countries, including diplomats, artists, academicians, and entrepreneurs. The event showcased the universal appeal of yoga and its growing popularity worldwide. It served as a reminder of the ancient practice’s origins in India and its ability to unite people from diverse backgrounds.
World Music Day 2023: Date, Theme, History, Importance
World Music Day, also referred to as Fête de la Musique, is a yearly commemoration held on June 21st that advocates for the influence of music and its universal ability to connect people. The occasion encourages musicians from diverse genres to showcase their talents in public areas, fostering a lively and inclusive ambiance for individuals worldwide to appreciate music. On this unique day, musicians and music enthusiasts from all corners of the globe unite to perform and revel in a wide array of musical genres.
World Music Day 2023 Theme
The theme of World Music Day 2023 is yet to be released, you can acquaint yourself with the theme of the previous year. The theme of World Music Day 2022 was “Music on the intersections.” This theme was about finding and appreciating music at the intersectional level.
World Music Day 2023 Importance
World Music Day, also known as Fête de la Musique, is a global celebration that occurs annually on June 21st. It holds great importance as a day devoted to the universal language of music, promoting peace, unity, and cultural diversity, all of which play a vital role in everyone’s lives. Musicians from various genres and backgrounds across the globe come together to share their passion and talent through concerts, street performances, and events. World Music Day encourages the appreciation of diverse musical styles, fostering connections between different cultures and creating a sense of belonging. It symbolizes the transformative power of music to transcend boundaries, unite people, and spread joy, making it a truly remarkable and meaningful observance.
World Music Day History
The origins of World Music Day can be traced back to 1982 when Jack Lang, the French Minister of Culture, proposed the concept of celebrating a day dedicated to music, known as Fête de la Musique or the festival of music. However, there is another theory suggesting that the celebration dates back to 1976 when Joel Cohen proposed an all-night music festival to commemorate the summer solstice. Regardless, the inaugural World Music Day festivities took place in Paris in 1982, featuring over 1,000 musicians performing across various parts of the city. Since then, musicians have taken to the streets, parks, and concert venues to play and share their passion for music on this special occasion.
Swaminathan Janakiraman named as new RBI deputy governor
Government of India has appointed Swaminathan Janakiraman as a Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). As per an official notification, Janakiraman’s appointment is for a period of three years starting from the date of joining, or until any further orders are issued. He will be succeeding Mahesh Kumar Jain, whose tenure concludes on June 22nd.
Who is Swaminathan Janakiraman?
Swaminathan Janakiraman currently holds the position of Managing Director at the State Bank of India (SBI), where he oversees the Corporate Banking and Subsidiaries division.
Previously, he was responsible for the bank’s Assurance functions, which included Risk Management, Regulatory Compliance, and Stressed Assets verticals.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Janakiraman is a seasoned banker with expertise in various areas such as Retail and Corporate Banking, International Banking, Trade Finance, Correspondent Banking & FI products, Digital Banking, and Transaction Banking products.
He has played a crucial role in the Finance function of SBI, overseeing budgeting and performance monitoring, Capital Planning, and Investor Relations. Additionally, he has been involved in the bank’s Digital Transformation journey as the Head of the Digital Banking vertical.
Janakiraman has also served as a nominee director of SBI on the boards of Yes Bank, Jio Payments Bank, and NPCI. Furthermore, he has represented SBI as a director in Bank of Bhutan, a joint venture of SBI.
First-ever treaty to safeguard high seas marine life adopted by UN members
Representatives from all 193 UN member nations joyfully approved the first-ever treaty to safeguard marine life in the high seas. UN Secretary-General António Guterres lauded the historical agreement for giving the ocean a chance to fight against the numerous threats that menace it.
With unanimous support, Guterres highlighted the significant timing, noting that the oceans are experiencing a critical and multifaceted threat.
He emphasised the treaty’s significance in addressing these dangers and urged all nations to make an effort to sign and validate it as soon as possible.
For over 20 years, the treaty explicitly designed to secure biodiversity in waters outside of the national borders-known as the high seas-covered almost half of the earth’s surface, yet efforts to achieve consensus had repeatedly failed in the past.
On September 20, during the annual meeting of world leaders at the General Assembly, the new treaty will be open for signatures. It will take effect once it is ratified by 60 countries.
PM Modi’s US Visit: Key Highlights
Grand Arrival and Engaging with the Indian Diaspora: PM Modi’s visit to the US began with a grand arrival at Lotte New York Palace hotel, where he was greeted with chants of ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai.’ He also interacted with the Indian diaspora, graciously giving autographs to representatives.
Meeting with Elon Musk: A highlight of the visit was PM Modi’s meeting with Tesla CEO Elon Musk. Musk described their conversation as excellent and expressed his plans to visit India in 2024, indicating the potential for future collaborations between India and Tesla.
Engagements with Prominent Personalities: PM Modi had insightful meetings with notable personalities during his time in New York. He met author and academic professor Robert Thurman, essayist and statistician Professor Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Nobel laureate Professor Paul Romer, American investor Ray Dalio, and astrophysicist Neil DeGrasse Tyson. These interactions focused on various topics, including resilience, risk-taking, India’s response to COVID-19, and strengthening international partnerships.
State Dinner Hosted by President Biden: PM Modi’s visit includes a state dinner hosted by President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden on June 22. This prestigious event serves as a platform for further discussions and deepening the bilateral relationship between India and the United States.
Address to the Joint Session of the US Congress: As part of his visit, PM Modi will deliver an address to the joint session of the US Congress on June 22. This provides an opportunity for him to share India’s perspectives and strengthen ties with the legislative branch of the US government.
Talks with President Biden: PM Modi will also hold talks with President Joe Biden in Washington D.C. These discussions will focus on consolidating bilateral cooperation and engagement in plurilateral forums such as the G20, Quad, and Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF).
International Yoga Day Message: Ahead of the special event at the UN headquarters, PM Modi shared a message on International Yoga Day, highlighting the global spirit of Yoga and its unifying power. He emphasized the participation of millions of people worldwide in Yoga activities, guided by the theme of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ (world is one family).