Shivakumara Swamiji, 111-year-old Lingayat seer passes away; Karnataka CM announces holiday

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Siddaganga seer Shivakumara Swamiji
Siddaganga seer Shivakumara Swamiji

New Delhi : Shivakumara Swami, the head seer of Siddaganga Mutt in Karnataka took his last breathe today morning, 21 January owing to age-related ailments. Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy announced the Seer's demise at Siddaganga. Karnataka BJP chief BS Yeddyurappa, said the Swamiji breathed his last at 11:44am and the last rites would be held on Tuesday at 4:30. 

The CM also announced a three-day mourning period. “The state government declares a three-day state mourning and one-day holiday for all schools, colleges and government offices,” Kumaraswamy said.

Shivakumara Swami, was an Indian spiritual leader, humanitarian and educationist. He was a Hindu religious figure of the Lingayatism sect and head of the Siddaganga Matha in Karnataka. He also founded the Sri Siddaganga Education Society.

Sources confirmed that the Lingayat seer had been under hospital treatment for past two months.

Dr Paramesh Shivana, the head of Siddaganga Hospital where the Swamiji was being treated, informed the media that the seer’s protein levels and blood pressure were found to be low early on Monday.

Kumaraswamy, Parameshwara and Home Minister MB Patil, along with the district administration and others will discuss the discuss security arrangements and other precautionary measures.

Yeddyurappa, Union minister DV Sadananda Gowda and BJP MP Shobha Karandlaje cancelled their scheduled programmes and rushed to the Mutt.

Expressing deep grief, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the seer devoted his life to the poor.

His Holiness Dr. Sree Sree Sree Sivakumara Swamigalu lived for the people, especially the poor and vulnerable. He devoted himself towards alleviating ills like poverty, hunger and social injustice. 

Prayers and solidarity with his countless devotees spread all across the world, said PM Narendra Modi in Twitter.

Sources said that helipads are being set up around the Mutt and Tumkur industrial area for the arrival of VIPs. Many devotees from different parts of Karnataka have also started arriving at the Mutt, hoping to pay last respects to the Swamiji. Traffic on National Highway-48 towards Tumkuru has been diverted to different routes due to the huge crowds assembling near the Mutt.