Raghubir Goyal Brings International Day of Yoga to White House

WASHINGTON – (Newsblaze) Sometimes the questions that White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest takes at the end of the daily press briefing can be “a stretch.”

On Tuesday, Earnest fielded a question from India Globe correspondent Raghubir Goyal that has become an almost annual thing for the White House Press Corps. It was about the International Day of Yoga, which is rather mercurial to official Washington.

“Today is the International Day of Yoga … Well, Prime Minister Modi proposed to the United Nations, and it was declared by the U.N. And when he addressed the U.S. Congress, he said that over 30 million Americans practice yoga today, which, of course, can eliminate most of their medical bills and stress and mental health if it’s practiced properly.”

“Any message from the President on this day? Because even the First Lady and the First Family, they have been working in the White House and practice this,” Goyal asked.

Before Goyal could even get his question out Earnest was turning towards his staff at the left the podium in the briefing room playfully mocking them for being slightly off guard on the Indian correspondent’s question.

Raghubir Goyal - International Day of Yoga.
Raghubir-Goyal brings International Day of Yoga to the White House.

“No kidding. How is that not in my briefing book? (Laughter.) Where is the International Day of Yoga tab? Come on, guys. We can’t just take the year off because it’s an election year. We got to be focused on the priorities.” Earnest said with amusement.

Earnest continued by saying “Asking that question is quite a stretch.”

Apparently according to Wikipedia, the International Day of Yoga which takes place on the Summer Solstice thanks to a decree by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has been celebrated for two years now. Celebrants on that day have managed to break two world records for the largest yoga class – 35,985 people – and the largest number of nationalities represented in one yoga class – 84 nations.

The White House Responded by saying that they were not aware it was the International Day of Yoga “But obviously there are millions of Americans who benefit from the studious pursuit of yoga. And there are many mental and physical health benefits associated with those who pursue this practice regularly. So obviously it underscores the deep cultural ties between our two countries. It certainly is a way that the American people have benefitted from the rich and ancient culture of India.” Josh Earnest said.

In a brief interview with Newsblaze, the next day, Goyal stated that he has been asking questions of Obama Administration Press Secretaries for the last five years on the subject of Yoga. He reiterated the health benefits of the daily meditation exercise. Goyal stated that he was very happy with Josh Earnest’s answer and the White House Press corps’ treatment of the subject by saying of his colleagues “they are all very nice and kind.”

Goyal’s question was also being covered by the Indian wire service the Press Trust of India.

International Day of Yoga White House Video

Randy Foreman
Randy Foreman is the NewsBlaze White House Correspondent, reporting from inside and outside The White House and around the beltway in Washington, D.C.