Yoga Enthusiasts mark Yoga Day in Kinshasa

Yoga enthusiasts of diverse nationalities engaged in the event involving gymnastics, meditation, and engaging dance and musical performance.
Yoga trainers perform on the stage in the Indian Embassy office in Kinshasa
Yoga trainers perform on the stage in the Indian Embassy office in KinshasaIndian Embassy in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo
Yoga enthusiasts perform Bhramari Pranayama (Bumblebee Breath) in the Yoga session held at the Indian Embassy office in Kinshasa.
Yoga enthusiasts perform Bhramari Pranayama (Bumblebee Breath) in the Yoga session held at the Indian Embassy office in Kinshasa. Indian Embassy in Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Kids and adults perform Yoga asanas during the 8th Yoga Day Celebrations at the Indian Embassy office in Kinshasa.
Kids and adults perform Yoga asanas during the 8th Yoga Day Celebrations at the Indian Embassy office in Kinshasa. Indian Embassy in Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Students of Indian School deliver a captivating dance performance at the Indian Embassy office, Kinshasa.
Students of Indian School deliver a captivating dance performance at the Indian Embassy office, Kinshasa. Indian Embassy in Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo

By Himani Bhatt

The Indian Embassy in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), marked International Yoga Day on June 19 at its office in the Gombe municipality. Over 100 Indians, some Congolese, and other communities attended the 8th edition of Yoga Day, themed “Yoga for Humanity.”

The International Day of Yoga (IDY) festivities kick-started at 9 a.m. and went on till 10:30 a.m.

The unique function at the intersection of Batetela and Justice avenues incorporated gymnastics with meditation, accompanied by a music and dance performance. Following the IDY celebrations, students of the Indian school demonstrated a stunning cultural program.

Kids, men, and women eagerly attended the function conducted at the intersection of Batetela and Justice avenues.

Since 2014, Yoga Day has been celebrated worldwide on June 21. On June 27, the Embassy also posted an official notice on its Facebook page commencing weekly Yoga classes (0900 hrs) at its premises. The lovely and optimistic atmosphere within the Embassy establishment also motivated the participants to indulge in the Yogic discipline. In addition, Yoga enthusiasts relished the Indian refreshments and snacks at the function.

IDY Celebrations by Indian Embassy

The Indian Embassy in DRC commemorated Yoga Day 2022 at multiple national prime locations. In partnership with the Indian Association of Congo Brazzaville, the Embassy held live virtual Yoga sessions via Zoom on June 4. Lucky Nankani conducted the curtain-raiser event to prepare people for the mega function on June 19. The Indian Embassy in Brazzaville partnered with the Indian Association of Brazzaville to conduct the IDY 2022 celebrations on 19 June at Memorial Pierre Savorgnan De BRAZZA in the DRC capital. The Indian ambassador G.R. Meena offered an introductory speech on the significance of Yoga in regular life.

The Memorial De Brazza’s Director-General, Belinda Ayessa, was the key speaker at the event who spoke at length about the great response to IDY celebrations.

Expressing how Congo gradually realized the importance of Yoga, she said, “For us, it was a great honor to be able to shelter for the first time here at the Pierre Savannah Memorial.” About 120 people, including the Indian community, members of the Diplomatic corporations, and native Congolese, enthusiastically participated in the event. In addition, it held a 30-minute Common Yoga Protocol (CYP) to gather Yoga lovers. Pointe-Noire and Dolisie also hosted Yoga sessions on June 19 with participation from the Honorary Consul, Paramanand Daswani.

Booming Indo-DRC Cultural Relationship

India has always maintained a friendly and cordial relationship with the DRC. India and DRC signed the cultural cooperation agreement on Oct. 29, 2009. There are about 1300 Indians and People of Indian origin (PIOs) in the country with Canadian, British, Tanzanian, and Kenyan citizenship. They primarily engage in the trade and service field comprising electronic stores, supermarket chains, restaurants, tours and travels, trading, etc. Most of the Indian community hails from Gujarat, while others are chiefly from Kerala and other South Indian states with a small number of populations from North India.

The Congo Hindu Mandal has also established a Hindu temple, including the Indian diaspora in Kinshasa. Apart from the cultural context, both nations have been going strong in trade and commercial sectors. Indian business people have invested in DRC in education, logistics, departmental stores/supermarkets, restaurants, etc.

To help susceptible families impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic, the Indian diaspora in the port city Pointe Noire and the capital city Brazzaville donated edible products to native authorities in May 2020. It included wheat flour, rice, sugar, cereals, and cooking oil worth US $100 000.

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