The Human Resources Development Ministry has asked all states to ensure schools have an optional yoga course for students. The course is expected to start from the next academic session, Minister of State for AYUSH – Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy – Shripad Yesso Naik said on Friday. Speaking during Question Hour in Lok Sabha, Naik said HRD Minister Smriti Irani had recently sent a notice on the matter to all states, PTI reported.

So far, yoga was not compulsory, but schools were told that interested students should be allowed to enrol for the course, according to the AYUSH minister. “We have told them that whoever wants to do yoga, they should be allowed to do yoga. Otherwise physical training is adjusted in the same period,” Naik said.

The minister added that the practice was made mandatory for the police under the “Yoga Training for Police Personnel” scheme and plans for the same were underway for defence personnel.