Shivakumara Swamiji, Siddaganga Matha, Tumkuru, Karnataka.
1 April 1907 |
Veerapura near Magadi Taluk, Ramanagara District, British India
Sri Sri Sri Shivakumara Swamigalu (Kannada: ಕಾಯಕ ಯೋಗಿ ಡಾ.ಶಿವಕುಮಾರ ಸ್ವಾಮಿಗಳು) (born 1 April 1907) better known as Shivakumara Swami, is a Hindu religious figure and humanitarian, who is the head of Sree Siddaganga Matha who provided education to many people. in Tumkur District, Karnataka, South India and founder of the Sri Siddaganga Education Society. He is described as the most esteemed adherent of Lingayatism.
He was initiated into the Viraktashram Order in 1930. Swamiji was born in Veerapura near Magadi Taluk, Ramanagara District. He studied English in college and is proficient in Kannada and Sanskrit. He has established educational institutions which offer courses in traditional learning of Sanskrit as well as modern science and technology. He is widely respected for his philanthropic work by all communities.
In recognition of his humanitarian work, Sri Swamiji was conferred with an honorary degree of Doctor of Literature by Karnatak University in 1965. He continues his humanitarian work at the age of 110. He is also known as "Nadedaduva Devaru" (Walking God) in Karnataka. The Karnataka government and many people also sought for Bharat Ratna for his social service.
Contributions to society
Swamiji's Guru Kula houses more than 8500 children of age group 5 to 16 years and is open to children from all religions, castes, and creeds, who are provided free food, education, and shelter (Trivida Dasohi). Under the pontiff's guidance, annual agricultural fair is held for the benefit of the local population. Karnataka state government has announced to institute Shivakumara Swamiji Prashasti from the year 2007, the centennial year of Swamiji. A.P.J Kalam, the former President of India visited him at Tumkur and praised the initiatives of Swamiji in education and humanitarian work. He is also working hard on taking care of thousands of poor students, their fees and daily accommodation along with three meals a day.
On his centenary in 2007, the Government of Karnataka awarded Swamiji the prestigious Karnataka Ratna award, the highest civilian award of the state. In 2015 the Government of India awarded him the Padma Bhushan. He became a supercentenarian on 1 April 2017.
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