Siddaganga Mutt audio clip has created a furore in Karnataka. Minister MB Patil had told that Siddaganga Seer Shivakumara Swamiji had supported the separate Lingayat religion campaign. But this was refuted by Siddaganga Mutt, and an audio clip supporting MB Patil's statement came to the media, for which the Mutt administration has clarified that the audio clip is fake.
Lingayats are divided into two groups in Karnataka-the ones supporting separate religious status to Lingayats and those who are happy with the current mix of Veerashaiva and Lingayat sect into Hinduism. The Karnataka government is favouring separate Lingayat religion movement. Anything from the Siddaganga Mutt or Seer Shivakumara Swamiji is considered of utmost importance especially to the Lingayats in the state.
Thus Minister MB Patil tried to encash on the sentiment and had met Siddaganga seer recently. After the meet, he had told that the seer was in support of separate religious status to Lingayats.
But then a press note released by the Mutt administration clarified that the seer did not tell anything to that effect.
"When Minister MB Patil met Siddaganga seer he had told that the term Veerashaiva is used by the educated class and people living in the cities whereas Lingayat is used in the rural regions. Both these terms mean the same. Leaders of all communities should come together and take a unanimous decision in this regard," the press note by Shivakumara Swamiji of Siddaganga Mutt stated.
It also said that trying to bring a divide in the community or society is not at all a good sign keeping in mind the well-being of the society.
In the audio tape which is allegedly released by the Siddaganga Mutt administration said that "Even Basavanna formed an independent religion. Referring to Siddaganaga seer as 'Dodda Buddhi' or Big Boss, the audio clip said that the seer had told that Lingayat should be an independent religion."
"Shaiva religion was prevalent from a very long time, but the term Veerashaiva came much later. It was also called as the Hindu Lingayat religion earlier. This was then changed to Veerashaiva Lingayat community."
This audio clip has been sent to the media in the name of dialogue with Mutt administrator Vishwanathaiah. Whatever MB Patil has said in the press conference is true. He spoke to the seer, and his support for separate Lingayat religion had made MB Patil happy, stated the audio clip.
However, the Mutt administrator Vishwanathaiah has clarified that the voice in the audio clip is not his. None of the officials from the Siddaganga Mutt have released any audio clip, he said. He also made an allegation that MB Patil's supporters might have spoken in the audio clip.
It can also be noted that Chief Minister Siddaramaiah had given two days time to Minister MB Patil to sort the out the confusion in this regard as the minister and the Congress government was being trolled for the statement by MB Patil.
Now, the question remains, if it was not from Siddaganga Mutt, who released the audio clip and who spoke posing as the Mutt representative? It looks like MB Patil is in a deep soup.