Since 2015, on June 21 every year, people across the world spill out on to the streets and strike a pose to mark International Yoga Day. As thousands of people put their best foot (and selfie face) forward, the internet is flooded with photographs of people in gravity-defying poses. Leading the pack on Thursday were politicians of India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, followed by sundry celebrities and sportspersons. After all, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi is an enthusiastic proponent of the ancient practice and it was at his behest that the United Nations declared June 21 as the day to commemorate India’s most famous export.
As the many virtues of #yoga spilled out of ancient texts and onto social media platforms, amid the fitness goals and spiritual odes were jokes by cynics unimpressed by the charade. After all, if you can’t join them, poke fun at them.
Modi’s video from last week, when he uploaded a montage of his morning exercise ritual in responses to a fitness challenge from cricketer Virat Kohli, provided fresh fodder for humour.