Karnataka

Siddaganga Mutt head Shivakumara Swamy passes away

Shivakumara Swami

Shivakumara Swami   | Photo Credit: File Photo

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Karnataka government has declared three-day mourning and a public holiday on Tuesday.

Dr. Shivakumara Swami, the 111-year-old head of the Siddaganga Mutt, passed away on Monday at the mutt in Tumakuru.

His body will be kept at the mutt premises till Tuesday to enable people to pay their last respects. The burial is expected to be held in the evening.

The Karnataka government has declared three-day mourning and a State-wide public holiday on Tuesday. A holiday has been declared on Monday in Tumakuru as well.

The death of Shivakumara Swami, who had braved many medical procedures despite his advanced age, was announced by Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy. Recalling his contribution as an educationist and a social reformer, the Chief Minister said, "He provided free education to thousands of children from depressed classes." Mr. Kumaraswamy also appealed for calm.

Deputy Chief Minister G. Parameshwara described the pontiff as "modern day Basavanna". He also appealed to the Centre to confer Bharata Ratna on the departed sage.

BJP State president B.S. Yeddyurappa described his death as a great loss to the community and beyond.

Home Minister M.B. Patil described him as a true follower of 12th century reformer Basaveshwara.

Thousands gather at mutt

As word of his failing health spread, thousands people from in and around Tumakuru, and politicians cutting across party lines, had gathered at the mutt.

Popularly known as ‘Nadedaaduva Devaru’ (Walking God), Shivakumara Swami was initiated into Viraktha Ashrama in 1930. Before becoming the seer, he went by his name Shivanna, and was born on April 1, 1908 at Veerapura, Magadi taluk, Ramanagara district.

Many prominent politicians, including Mr. Yeddyurappa and Mr. Patil, are at the mutt. The Head of Adichunchungiri mutt, Nirmalananda Swami, also arrived at the mutt at midday.

The 111-year-old seer of Siddaganga mutt, who was on ventilation support until recently, was brought back to the mutt on January 16. He was  being treated for a lung infection which he developed after undergoing a liver bypass.

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Printable version | Dec 14, 2019 12:51:23 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/siddaganga-mutt-seer-passes-away/article26049720.ece

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