BENGALURU: Prominent religious leader and the first female seer of the Lingayat community, Maate Mahadevi (73), who was suffering from multi-organ failure, died of cardiac arrest here on Thursday.
She was admitted to Manipal Hospitals on March 8 with chronic kidney and lung ailments. Later, she developed sepsis and was on life support till the end came around 4.45 pm on Thursday.
She was the head of the Basava Dharma Peetha located at Kudala Sangama in Bagalkot district. Her mortal remains will be kept for public viewing at Basava Mantapa in Rajajinagar, Bengaluru, till 12 pm on Friday and from there, it will be shifted to Kudala Sangama and kept for public viewing till Saturday afternoon.
Last rites to take place on Saturday
According to Ganga Mataji of Basava Dharma Peetha, the last rites will be performed at Kudalasangama on Saturday between 3 and 5 pm. Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy, former CM Siddaramaiah, Home Minister M B Patil and other cabinet ministers are expected to attend.
Maate Mahadevi was in the forefront of the recent movement demanding separate religious status for Lingayat community. She was born on March 13, 1946. Following her initiation in 1965 by Lingananda Swami, she started writing Vachanas and entered a life of spirituality at the age of 19.
So far, she has written around 200 books. She even started an educational institution in the name of Jaganmata Akka Mahadevi Ashrama in Dharwad for the education and welfare of girl children. Maate Mahadevi was born in Chitradurga as the eldest daughter of late S R Basappa and Gangamma. She was named Ratna.
After completion of her science graduation course in 1965 she took Jangama Deeksha (sanyasa initiation). She later took up MA course at Karnataka University, and passed with distinction. Her book titled ‘Basava Vachana Deepti’ was banned by the state government and it was upheld by the Karnataka High Court in 2003. Thus, instead of ‘Kudalasangama Deva”, used by Basavanna, she used “Linga Deva” as the pen name.