From the Deccan Herald
Schools in Mysore cannot teach foreigners on travel visas
Ramesh S Kebbehundi, Mysore, Apr 11, DHNS:
The booming yoga tourism in Mysore city may take a beating, thanks to a police circular to yoga schools ordering them not to teach foreigners visiting on travel visas.
The schools have been asked to teach only foreigners who arrive on ‘student visa’ or ‘yoga visa’ and to obtain permission from the Ministry of Home Affairs. Besides, police further cautioned the managements of yoga schools in the city that they would face legal action if they violated the order. They have also been asked to furnish to the nearest police station details of foreigners learning yoga on ‘student’ or ‘yoga’ visa with permission obtained from Ministry of Home Affairs.
The police action is designed to keep track of foreigners visiting the country, in the light of the terrorist threat perception. But the managements of Yoga schools in the city are in a quandary as none of them have obtained permission from Ministry of Home Affairs and have been teaching yoga to foreigners visiting on travel visa. They just make do with a licence from Mysore City Corporation.
Speaking to Deccan Herald, yoga teacher Ramesh Kumar of Pranayushya Yoga Shaala of Krishnamurthypuram said the circular will deny yoga learning to hundreds of foreign yoga students. It would affect not only their business but would also impact adversely the tourism industry in the city as thousands of foreigners come to the city not only for sightseeing, but also to learn yoga.
The circular went against the spirit of the ‘yoga dasara’ – usually held during Dasara festival – to promote yoga which is prohibited to foreigners for reasons unknown. Yoga teaching in Mysore has a long history. It was patronised by Wadiyars with Nalwadi Krishnaraja Wadiyar opening a school at the Jaganmohan Palace.