Juna Peethadheeshwar Acharya Mahamandaleshwar Swami Avdheshanand Giri Maharaj, top Indian spiritual leader, arrived in New York on a seven-day US-Canada visit on Tuesday. Swami Avdheshanand Giri Maharaj received a warm welcome at the John F Kennedy International Airport and was received by New York-based community leader Prem Bhandari among others.
Speaking to International Business Times, Bhandari said Swami Avdheshanand Giri will interact with the community members in Manhattan after resting and then leave for Canada on a three-day visit. Later, Swami Avdheshanand Giri will participate in the International Yoga Day celebrations on June 21 at a grand event organised in New York's Times Square.
Swami Avdheshanand Giri, who is the head of June Amhara Haridwar, is the guest of honour at the Times Square event on the occasion of International Yoga Day. He will also lead the celebrations.
Prem Bhandari, who is the chairman of the non-profit organisation Jaipur Foot USA and President of Rajasthan Association of North America (RANA), will be overseeing the stay of the seer in the US. For this purpose, he has established a 21-member organising committee.
Swami Avdheshanand Giri will interact with the community members in New Jersey, Long Island, and New York during his stay in the US. Swami Avdheshanand Giri has amassed a huge following in the US. Bhandari said that many of Swamiji's followers from various states have already started arriving.
Yoga celebrations in US
International Yoga Day has been celebrated in the US on June 21 every year since 2015 and the tradition will continue this year. There are over 36 million yoga practitioners in the US. In the last four years, the number of yoga practitioners has increased by more than 50 percent. Besides New York, International Yoga Day celebrations will be held across the US, including major cities such as Boston, Houston, Dallas, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Seattle and Miami.