The police are also investigating the utensils used by Lakshmivara Theertha in the hours before his death.

Udupi seer death Police cordon off Shiroor Mutt examine CCTV footage
news Saturday, July 21, 2018 - 14:01

Days after the death of Lakshmivara Theertha, the chief seer of Shiroor Mutt in Udupi's famed Shri Krishna Temple, the police cordoned off the Mutt and placed restrictions at the ‘Moola’ near Hiriadka.

Meanwhile, Lakshmivara's brother, Lathavya Acharya, filed a complaint in Hiriadka Police Station asking the police to probe the death of the seer, rejecting the notion that he died a natural death.

The police are also re-watching CCTV footage in and around the Mutt in addition to examining the utensils used by Lakshmivara in the hours before his death. 

Several theories have emerged after authorities at Kasturba Hospital in Manipal raised suspicions that the seer may have been poisoned. Dr Avinash Shetty, Medical Superintendent at Kasturba Hospital, however, said that the complete toxicology report may take up to two weeks. 

Meanwhile, Vishwesha Theertha of Pejawar Mutt denied suggestions that a member of the Mutt in Udupi was involved in the death of Lakshmivara.

“The Shiroor seer’s brother, Lathavya Acharya, called me and said the seer had eaten from unpolished utensils (those without ‘kalai’) and he would recover. But, unfortunately, he has passed away. I don’t think it was a murder,” he said speaking to The Hindu.

However, Ravikiran, the lawyer of the seer, who confirmed that Lakshmivara was planning to file a criminal case against Vidyadheesha Theertha, the chief of Palimar Mutt who currently holds power at the Krishna Temple in Udupi, had said that the seer was facing threats to his life. The case was regarding a 'pattada devaru' (idol) that Lakshmivara believed belonged to Shiroor Mutt. 

Read: The suspicious death of an Udupi seer, and the conflict around the reigning deity

Vishwavallabha Theertha, the chief of Sode Mutt, which is paired with the Shiroor Mutt, will begin the process of appointing Lakshmivara's successor. “We are looking for an eligible person to take over the Shiroor Mutt. Under the guidance of senior seers, the process of selection of an heir will begin,” he said speaking to The New Indian Express.