The seer’s remains were airlifted from Udupi to Bengaluru through a helicopter to the HAL airport at 4 pm.

news Sunday, December 29, 2019 - 21:02

It was exactly 9:21 am on Sunday morning when a junior seer in the Pejawar Mutt in Udupi confirmed the worst fears of devotees at the Sri Krishna Temple in Udupi- that Vishwesha Theertha swami, the seer of Pejawar Mutt was no more. 

Immediately after the announcement, Udupi’s BJP MLA Raghupathi Bhat told reporters outside the Pejawar Mutt that doctors had confirmed that the seer had passed away at the mutt. 

Earlier on Saturday evening, doctors at Kasturba Hospital in Manipal had in a bulletin stated that the seer “remains unconscious and continues to be on life support systems. Tests done showed severe brain dysfunction”. The seer was shifted to the Pejawar mutt along with ventilator support early on Sunday morning. 

By 10 am, thousands of devotees gathered at the Sri Krishna Temple, to pay their respects to the seer. A procession was held taking the seer’s mortal remains around Car Street, where all eight mutts of the Sri Krishna Temple are located. The remains were later shifted to Ajjarkad Ground in Udupi to allow the public to pay their respects. 

Meanwhile, Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa announced a three-day mourning period in the state after paying his respects to the seer in Udupi. The seer’s remains were kept in a bamboo basket and he was honoured by Yediyurappa who placed a national flag in front of the basket. The seer was also given a 21-gun salute, as per full state honours, by police officials in Udupi. 

The seer’s remains were then airlifted to Bengaluru through a helicopter to the HAL airport at 4 pm. Thousands of devotees in the city paid respects to him at the National College Grounds. The devotees waited for over three hours patiently to catch a glimpse of the revered seer. 

Almost all high-profile BJP leaders in the state were present including Chief Minister Yediyurappa, MPs Shobha Karandlaje and Tejasvi Surya, ministers Basavaraj Bommai, R Ashok, Ashwath Narayan and Govind Karjol. Union Minister of Finance Nirmala Sitharaman also arrived at the ground at 5:30 pm to pay respects to the seer. Opposition leaders including Siddaramaiah, MB Patil, HK Patil and Dinesh Gundu Rao, also paid respects to the seer. 

The seer’s remains were laid rest at the Vidyapeetha in Basavangudi after 9 pm, where the last rites were conducted. 

“He was a guru who did not differentiate on the basis of caste or religion. He has held iftaar at the Udupi Sri Krishna Temple and he was against the practice of Made Snana. He was a spiritual guide to many of us and he always said that we have to be role models in our society,” Raghottama Acharya, a disciple of the seer told TNM. 

Vishwesha Theertha swami was considered one of the most liberal seers in the Ashta mutts of the Udupi temple. He was also a member of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad’s steering committee constituted to pursue the Ram Janmabhoomi movement.  He had also shot off a letter during Emergency in India in 1975.