muslim woman doing yoga
[REPRESENTATIONAL IMAGE] Students of Anjuman-e-Islam in Ahmedabad practice yoga 30 minutes every day and say that it helps them keep up with fasting during Ramadan In Picture: A woman practices yoga at a public park ahead of World Yoga Day, in Ahmedabad, India. [Representational Image]Reuters

The minister of state for AYUSH (Ayurveda,Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy), Sripad Naik, said Saturday he will order a probe into his ministry's reply to a Right to Information (RTI) query that it was the government's policy not to hire the Muslims in the department.

"These reports are an attempt to defame the AYUSH ministry.I will order a probe into this." the minister was quoted as saying by ANI.

He further claimed the reports were false.

The ministry's RTI reply came in October 2015 in response journalist Pushp Sharma's query that sought the number of Muslim candidates who applied for the posts of yoga trainers for the World Yoga Day in the AYUSH department.

The ministry's reply to the query said 711 Muslims had applied for the short-term overseas assignments as yoga teachers and none was selected. The reply stated in total 3,481 Muslim candidates had applied for the post of yoga trainers in the department and no Muslim candidate was selected.

"As per government policy - No Muslim candidate was invited, selected or sent abroad," the ministry said in the RTI reply, the Hindustan Times reported.

The online version of the RTI replies and the report have been carried by the Milli Gazette , a community newspaper reporting on minorities, according to the HT.

The AYUSH ministry had organised the World Yoga Day June 21. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the United Nation's recognition of marking June 21 as World Yoga Day is a proof that the world is curious to know about India and the country must also educate the global audience about its culture.