Swaraj, who addressed the first International Day of Yoga celebrations at the UN, also attended a function marking the day at the Hindu Temple Society of North America yesterday.     

The way the day was commemorated around the globe, "the world had made the first International Day of Yoga its own," Swaraj said at the Hindu Temple Society of North America.

While yoga is one of India's most important gifts to the world, the UN's decision to commemorate the day underlines the appreciation for India and its growing soft power, she said.

Swaraj said the colour of the skin, religious or political affiliation or the nationality did not matter for the hundreds of thousands that performed yoga in the city.

"They were all united by the awareness of the power of yoga," she said.

The External Affairs Minister said "today we have made a good beginning" and the future is filled with immense possibilities.

She cited the benefits of yoga in the treatment of asthma, diabetes, drug addiction and heart disease. "Yoga is about self discovery and self acceptance," she said.

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