Top CPI-M leaders at Yoga event   

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Thiruvananthapuram, Jan 4: To dispel the notion that Yoga is linked to a particular religion or belief, several top CPI(M) leaders attended a yoga performance in Kannur of North Kerala.

The yoga 'asanas' were performed sans any special prayer or chanting of mantras. The move is also seen as an attempt to counter BJP, which is trying to make inroads into the state's political landscape dominated by Congress-led UDF and LDF spearheaded by CPI-M.


Titled 'Chethana Yoga', the display and training was organised at Kannur, a hotbed of party politics, yesterday. Stating that the yoga display was not a party programme, senior CPI(M) leader and Lok Sabha MP P K Sreemathi said that the party would support the positive and scientific aspects of yoga.

She also said that there was an effort from certain quarters to claim the legacy of yoga. The former state minister said CPI(M) has decided to extend support to yoga practice, organised at the grassroot level.

Top CPI-M leaders, including politburo member Pinarayi Vijayan, party state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan and central committeee member E P Jayarajan witnessed the display.

Around 1,200 people, including women from across the state, participated in the programme at the Jawahar stadium, organised by the Indian Martial Arts Academy and Yoga Study Centre (IMAAYSC), a pro-CPI(M) initiative. The programme comprised over 30 'asanas' (postures) including 'surya namaskar'.

The performance is envisaged to break the widespread notion that yoga is linked to any particular religion or belief, according to CPI(M) party sources. Sreemathi said yoga can give a boost to the mental and physical health of a person and cannot be identified with any particular religion.

"IMAAYSC has submitted a proposal to promote yoga practice and training among people for better upkeep of their health and the party accepted it," Sreemathi told PTI.

People, who participated in the event, were trained by the IMAAYSC under such a programme, she added. Manav Ekta Mission founder Sri M was the chief guest at the function.

The party had earlier extended support for the Ganeshotsav procession and pageantry in connection with Sree Krishna Jayanthi last year.

Ahead of Assembly polls this year, BJP is warming up to the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana yogam, an organisation of the numerically strong backward Ezhava community, hitherto a strong support base for the Left.


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