Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday paid respects to the ‘Gadduge’ (final resting place) of Shivakumara Swamiji at Siddaganga Math, a prominent Lingayat seminary here, and said that Swamiji’s work would continue to inspire everyone.
The Swamiji, who was known as the ‘Walking God’ among his countless followers, had passed away last year at the age of 111.
The Prime Minister, who arrived at the Yelahanka Airbase in Bengaluru, went directly to Tumakuru, where the Math is located, by a chopper along with Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, Union Minister Pralhad Joshi and former Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda among others.
PM Modi, after offering respects to the ‘Gadduge’, planted Bilva plant (Aegle marmelos) on the premises of the Math and also laid the foundation for the construction of a museum dedicated to Swamiji here before addressing the gathering, largely comprising students.
Speaking on the occasion, PM Modi said he was feeling blessed to begin 2020 from the sacred land of Siddaganga, but at the same time was feeling the “vacuum” in the absence of Shivakumara Swamiji.
“It is rare to see the number of people Swamiji had inspired during his lifetime. I’m really fortunate to lay the foundation for the museum in Swamiji’s memory.
Through this museum, his works will continue to inspire generations,” he said.
Also, Prime Minister remembered VishweshaTheerthaof Udupi’s Pejawar Math who passed away recently.
Yediyurappa and the present pontiff of the Math Siddalinga Swamiji were among the others present.
Known as “trivida dasohi” for his triple sacraments – food, shelter and education – among his followers, Shivakumara Swamiji was considered as the incarnation of Basavanna, the 12th-century social reformer, as he accepted all irrespective of their religion or caste.
The present seer of the seminary Siddalinga Swamiji presented Modi a silver statue of Shivakumara Swamiji as a memento.