New Delhi: Shivakumara Swamiji, prominent Lingayat seer of Tumakuru-based Siddaganga Math, who was known as the ‘Walking God’, passed away at the age of 111 on Monday after a prolonged illness.

A recipient of Padma Bhushan and Karnataka Ratna awards, the seer was in a serious condition for the past two months and had undergone a surgery at a private hospital in Chennai about two months ago for his liver related complications.

The swamiji showed signs of improvement but his condition suddenly deteriorated in the past few days.

Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy announced a one-day holiday across the states and a three-day mourning period.

Leaders of several political parties came together to mourn the death of the longest-living seer.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi

PM Modi expressed grief on the demise of the seer and praised his contribution towards the society, particularly the marginalised section.

“His Holiness Dr. Sree Sree Sree Sivakumara Swamigalu lived for the people, especially the poor and vulnerable. He devoted himself towards alleviating ills like poverty, hunger and social injustice. Prayers and solidarity with his countless devotees spread all across the world.”

“HH Dr. Sree Sree Sree Sivakumara Swamigalu remained at the forefront of ensuring better healthcare and education facilities for the marginalised. He represents the best of our traditions of compassionate service, spirituality and protecting the rights of the underprivileged.”

“I have had the privilege to visit the Sree Siddaganga Mutt and receive the blessings of His Holiness Dr. Sree Sree Sree Sivakumara Swamigalu. The wide range of community service initiatives being done there are outstanding and are at an unimaginably large scale.”

Congress President Rahul Gandhi

“I am sorry to hear about the passing of Shivakumar Swami Ji, Pontiff of the Siddaganga Mutt. Swami Ji was respected & revered by millions of Indians, from all religions & communities. His passing leaves behind a deep spiritual void. My condolences to all his followers.”

President Ram Nath Kovind

“Extremely sad to learn of the passing of spiritual leader Dr Sree Sree Sree Sivakumara Swamigalu Ji. He contributed immensely to society particularly towards healthcare and education. My condolences to his countless followers.”

Karnataka CM H D Kumaraswamy

“I am deeply saddened to announce that the walking God, Parama Poojya Siddaganga Sri, has passed away. It is an irreparable loss to the state. His contribution to the society transformed lakhs of people from across the state. He shaped the future of many people.”

Congress

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Siddaganga Shri Shivakumara Swamiji, his selfless service to society will always be remembered.”

“His spiritual teachings, his benevolence and his large hearted acceptance of all beings will continue to inspire generations to come. We join millions of Indians in this time of grief.”