On the afternoon of May 15, Premier Li Keqiang and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi attended a tai chi-yoga event in the Temple of Heaven.
Beijing in early summer greets visitors with clear sky, gentle breeze and all-embracing green. Bathed in the late afternoon sun, the ancient buildings in the Temple of Heaven stand sedate and magnificent.
At the square in front of the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest, Premier Li and Prime Minister Modi watched a joint tai chi and yoga exercise by over 400 Chinese and Indian tai chi and yoga practitioners, whose movements and poses spoke perfectly of the balance of strength and flexibility.
The two prime ministers talked with the coaches and practitioners and made heartwarming remarks on the occasion.
Premier Li said that tai chi and yoga are both crown jewels of the ancient Chinese and Indian civilizations and both have a long and proud history. The two may look different in forms, yet they both are about people’s pursuit of harmony between man and nature and of unity between the body and the mind, and both embody the very essence of the time-honored Chinese and Indian civilizations. The joint event held in the Temple of Heaven will enable the two practices of tai chi and yoga to add radiance to each other. It will further demonstrate the aspiration and determination of China and India to join hands to deliver an even better life to the 2.5 billion Chinese and Indian people, and to foster a harmonious relationship between the two countries and uphold stability and prosperity of the region and durable peace of the world.
Prime Minister Modi said that the event is highly meaningful as it gives expression to a new state of development of India-China relations. Both yoga and tai chi could help people achieve balance among the human body, mind and wisdom to better cope with pressure in peace. The young people of India and China may practice yoga and tai chi as ways of engaging each other for mutual leaning and mutual understanding. This, again, attests to the role of cultural exchange in advancing overall bilateral relations.
Premier Li and Prime Minister Modi also encouraged the practitioners to do even more to facilitate exchange among Oriental civilizations and spread traditional cultures.
Their remarks were warmly received with big rounds of applause from the audience, many of whom rushed over for a photo opportunity with the leaders.
After the event, accompanied by Premier Li, Prime Minister Modi was shown around the Hall of Prayer for Good Harvest.
Later, the two prime ministers took a stroll in the woods nearby, sharing views on the future of bilateral relations and cooperation. Premier Li congratulated Prime Minister Modi on the success of his visit and wished him a nice trip to Shanghai. Prime Minister Modi said he looked forward to receiving Premier Li at an early date in India.