‘Treasure hunters’ vandalise Brindavan of saint Vyasaraja near Hampi on lunar eclipse day

The site of the vandalised Brindavan   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

The Brindavan (tomb) of Sri Vyasaraja Tirtha, one of the most celebrated saints of the Madhwa tradition, situated in Anegundi near the Hampi world heritage site, was found razed to the ground on Thursday. It was one among the nine Brindavans (of the nine saints of the tradition) at the Nava Brindavan Gadde (island) premises on the bank of River Tungabhadra.

The incident, which sent shock waves across the community and beyond, came to light on Thursday morning when a few followers of the tradition visited the site for performing rituals after the lunar eclipse.

Considering the manner in which the Brindavan, the burial site of the ancient saint, was dug up and destroyed, the police and seers suspected it to be the act of people who were after a hidden treasure buried in the ground. The incident was suspected to have occurred during the lunar eclipse early on Wednesday.

As the news spread like wildfire, seers of different maths and followers of the tradition began rushing towards Nava Brindavan.

“As we received the information, our teams rushed to the spot. We prima facie feel that this is the act of treasure-hunters. We found some puja material on the spot. It is evident that some kind of puja was offered to the seat of the saint. Our scientific investigation team, including the forensic experts, are already at the spot and collecting the samples for further investigation. The dog squad is also there. I have constituted a special team headed by Circle Inspector of Police attached to Gagavathi Rural circle to crack the case. I am confident that we will lay our hands shortly on the guilty,” Renuka K. Sukumar, Superintendent of Police, Koppal, told The Hindu.

Saint Vyasaraja Tirtha was the spiritual guru for Sri Krishnadevaraya, the mightiest emperor of the Vijayanagar Empire. He entered the Brindavan in 1539. He was the 12th Yati in the Madhwacharya lineage. His aradhana (death anniversary) is celebrated by the Sosale Vyasaraja Mutt.

Nava Brindavans are in an open place with no security. The premises see religious activity only when devotees visit them during aradhana. Some of the pilgrims and devotees visiting Hampi go to Nava Brindavan to pay obeisance to the saints.

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Printable version | Dec 8, 2021 3:54:20 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/treasure-hunters-vandalise-brindavan-of-saint-vyasaraja-near-hampi-on-lunar-eclipse-day/article28543008.ece

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