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Lingayat Mutt sex scandal: Seers to demand withdrawal of administrator’s appointment

Chitradurga: The seers on Monday will stage a dharna to oppose the appointment of an administrator for the Jagadguru Murugharajendra Bruhanmutt of Chitradurga in view of rape accused Shivamurthy Murugha Sharanaru being in jail since September 1.

The dharna will be led by in-charge seer Basavaprabhu in the premises of the District Commissioner’s office in Chitradurga. Seers across the state will protest to urge the government to withdraw the appointment order.

On Decemebr 13, the Karnataka government had appointed an administrator for the Chitradurga Mutt in the place of rape accused seer Shivamurthy Murugha Sharanaru.

Deputy Secretary of Revenue Department T.C. Kantharaj in his order stated that retired IAS officer P.S. Vastrad has been appointed as the administrator of the mutt.

The order said that the report by the District Commissioner of Chitradurga had stated that there were two cases under the Pocso Act and Atrocity Act against the accused Murugha seer. The case was under investigation by the court and the accused seer was under judicial custody.

The government sought the opinion of the Advocate General (AG) in this regard. The AG opined that in the view of protecting the property of the trust and since the trustee was under judicial custody, the administrator could be appointed.

After this, the government had asked for the ground report by the District Collector (DC), Chitradurga. The report by the DC stated that since the accused seer was under judicial custody, the management of total immovable properties and finance management of mutt has become difficult.

Reacting to the government’s move, Basavaprabhu Swamiji had stated that they will request the government to take back the decision on administrator. He claimed that lakhs of devotees were pained by the decision.

“We had requested CM Bommai not to appoint an administrator. Legal options will be initiated to oppose the decision. There is a conspiracy against the Murugha seer. Everything is going smoothly in the mutt,” he maintained.

Meanwhile, S.K. Basavarajan, the former administrator of the mutt, will be released from the prison on bail on Monday. Basavarajan was arrested on charges of hatching a conspiracy against the seer to fix him in the Pocso and Atrocity cases.

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