Vidyavallabha Tirtha Swami of Kaniyur Math, who will be ascending the paryaya peetha of Krishna Math in Udupi on January 18, was accorded a civic reception at the Town Hall here on Wednesday.

The Swami was brought in a chariot from Sharavu Mahaganapati Temple.

A large number of devotees and students from Srinivasa Group of institutions came in a procession which was led by Yagnesh Achar, who rendered devotional songs. People donning Yakashanga vesha (yakshagana costumes) and that of comedians danced. Chande and bands were participated in the procession.

Urban Development Minister Vinay Kumar Sorake, Health and Family Welfare Minister U.T. Khader, MP Nalin Kumar Kateel, and Mangalore City South MLA J.R. Lobo were among the several persons who took part in the function held at the Town Hall.

The function started with a soulful rendition of devotional songs by students from Roman Catherine Lobo School for the blind.Speaking at the function, art critic M. Prabhakar Joshi said the system of paryaya symbolises democratisation of religion. Mr. Joshi said the system provided for performing religious activities at the Krishna Math by one swamiji with the cooperation of other seven swamis.

The administration was similar to a cooperative society, he said.

Mr. Sorake, who is also the Udupi District In-charge Minister, said he would provide all the support necessary for Swami to discharge his duties in the next two years. Arrangements had been made to make the ceremony of ascending the Paryaya Peeta a state festival.

Receiving the felicitation, Swamiji said it was necessary to inculcate good values among children, who had been seen taking the wrong route.

Good values and culture would stand in good stead and ensure that they they walk the virtuous path throughout their lives.

Chairman of Srinivasa Group of Institutions A. Raghavendra Rao, who also heads the Paryaya Festival committee, also spoke.

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