Siddaganga seer Shivakumara swamiji who was mum on the Lingayat agitation seeking separate religion tag so far, has reportedly supported the movement. Minister MB Patil claimed that the seer was of the opinion that Veerashaiva and Lingayat are separate, as Veerashaiva came into existence after Lingayat. Hence, Lingayat should be declared an independent religion, Patil said, reports Kannada Prabha.
Minister Patil has stated that with this all disputes between Lingayat and Veearshaiva has been put to rest as there is none above Siddaganga seer when it comes to the religion. He also claimed that it has given a boost to Basava Dharma.
Patil was in Siddaganag mutt to attend a programme on Sunday. He spoke to Dr Shivakumara Swamy in private. As soon as he returned to the City, he called a press meet and made the announcement. In terms of age and experience, Siddaganga seer is senior to both Sirigere Swamy and Suttur Swamy. In aspects of religion, Siddaganga seer’s words are final. He called the centenarian Siddaganga seer 'Modern Basavanna'. He has been practising Basavanna’s doctrine of providing food, education and health.
With the seer's statement the dispute about Veerashaiva and Lingayat being same or separate has come to a conclusion. It is also a victory to the doctrinal agitation and to get justice to Basavanna. Henceforth, there is no need to seek the opinion and guidance of any intellectuals. Siddaganga seer is supreme to the community. The efforts to establish Basava Dharma has finally received a big boost, he exuded confidence.
Patil also stated that for the first time he is taking oath and stating only the truth that Siddaganga seer said only Lingayat should be an independent religion. He wanted to videograph the seer’s statement but in the last minute seer said no to videographing his statement. When an officer at the mutt asked the seer whether Veerashaiva and Lingayat are separate or one, the seer clearly stated “only Lingayat religion should be established,” Patil claimed.
When asked why the seer did not state this earlier, Patil said this was the first time we went and asked him. It is irrelevant that he did not mention it earlier. Ministers Shamanuru Shivashankarappa and Eshwar Khandre are all our kin but Siddaganga seer’s opinion is final, he said.