Lingayat religion row: Seers want dissolution of panel

Over 500 seers participate, Shamanur skips over ill health

Lingayat religion row: Seers want dissolution of panel

GADAG, dhns: Veerashaiva and Lingayat awareness rally held here on Sunday urged the state government to dissolve a seven-member panel headed by a retired high court judge to study the demand for separate religion status for Lingayat community.

About 500 seers who included the seers of Pancha Peetha maintained that it was impossible to accord the status of independent religion to Lingayat community.

They reiterated that both Veerashaiva and Lingayat were one and the same and community members should thwart attempts of dividing the Veerashaiva-Lingayat community. Channa Siddarama Panditaradhya Shivacharya Swami of Shreeshaila Peetha said that seeking the independent religions status based on the gazetter published by the British was absurd.

"Vachanas of Sharanas are the core essence of Veerashaiva religion and the government should realise this," he said. "How could Basavanna be the founder of Lingayat religion when he admitted in his Vachana that he became Veerashaiva from Shaiva?" Seer of Rambhapuri Peetha, Veera Someshwara Shivacharya Swami said:" You can change the book and its content, but not the history."

Siddalinga Deshikendra Shivacharya of Ujjini urged the electorate to teach a lesson to the state government for dividing society on religious lines. "A section of politicians and seers are misleading the community members that they would ensure facilities meant for minority religion. They are dividing the Veerashaiva religion, an attempt started by former chief minister D Devaraj Urs," charged
Dr Chandrashekhar Shivacharya Swami of Kashi Peetha.

Mahantalinga Shivacharya Swami of Vibhutipur Mutt stated that Akhila Bharata Veerashaiva Mahasabha president Shamanur Shivashankarappa could not attend due to ill health.

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