UDUPI: Lakshmivara Theertha was in the centre of controversies on several occasions. He had expressed interest to file nomination papers for the recently held assembly election from Udupi constituency. However, he backed out stating that he had been convinced by the BJP central leadership not to contest. At that time, it was said many conservatives among the devotees had exerted pressure on the seer to withdraw from the poll race as it did not suit a seer to contest elections. Later, the seer had acknowledged the work of PM Narendra Modi.
He found himself in another controversy when he made allegations that the Udupi Ashta mutt seers have children and this had gone viral on social media. Later he had clarified that it was a morphed video that was aired by a Kannada TV channel. The seer had fallen ill a few months ago and he had given the idols of the presiding deity of his Mutt to Sri Ishapriya Theertha, junior seer of Sri Adamar mutt, to keep it in the sanctum sanctorum of the Sri Krishna Mutt. But when he sought the idol back after his recovery, the seers of six mutts refused to hand it over. The six seers agreed to return the idol after the Shiroor seer appointed an heir, but he did not accept the terms. He had even said he would file a case in this regard.
The controversy continues in his death too. Lathavya, brother of Lakshmivara Theertha, has now alleged that the seer has been murdered. In a complaint registered at Hiriyadka police station, he stated that the seer has been poisoned to death. He also demanded a high-level probe into the case.