by Michael Rodrigues
Udupi: Sugunendra Tirtha Swamiji of Puttige Math was surprised by the fact that such an incident had taken place during 'Vitlla Pindi '. Speaking to the media persons here, he said, "It's a tradition to invite all Ashta Math Heads during Krishna Janmashtami-Krishna Leelothsava. Sode Math Sri Vishwa Vallabha Thirtha not inviting Shiroor Math Sri Laxmivara Thirtha is not right. This has denied him the opportunity to take part in Krishna Leelothsava. Perhaps this is how he must have thought of doing things in his own way. It would have been better if Paryaya Sode Math had involved everybody for these celebrations. This controversy had erupted because of the “failure” to extend an invitation ".
Further he said that he was not invited last June 18 to the Sode Math Paryaya Utsav celebrations that was held. He had gone on a fast over it. But the then Chief Minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda had requested him to give up his fast, which he agreed to. “It will be better if all the Seers of 'Ashta Maths' have a discussion on this issue and come to a solution" he said.
Lakshmivara Tirtha Swamiji of Shiroor Math had taken out a parallel procession around Car Street, just 15 minutes before Vishwallabha Tirtha Swamiji of Paryaya Sode Math during the Vittal Pindi festival here on September 9. The parallel procession was result of the estrangement of relations between Sode Math and Shiroor Math. It has been a tradition for Paryaya Math, in this case Sode Math, to take out a procession, which includes a “Rathostsava” during the Vittal Pindi festival. It was, perhaps, the first time that such a parallel procession was taken out, exposing the rift among Seers of Ashta Maths.
Moreover he said that, in the past three years, during his Paryaya times, thousands of Krishna devotees had offered contributions and it is through this amount, 'Rath' costing crores of rupees had been made and offered to Lord Krishna. We had wished that Utsavs should be held for Lord Krishna. Now during Sode Paryaya times, keeping the Rath in a corner without using it has pained myself including the devotees of Lord Krishna, said Puttige Math Head.
At the same time Pejawar Math's Sri Vishweshatheertha Swamiji issued a press release on Monday that he was saddened by the fact that there were two processions during the Vittal Pindi festival in the City on September 9.
In a press release he said having two processions or two “rathotsavas” (car festivals) was not a good tradition. This would usher in a bad tradition. He did not know the background and reasons for the two processions. The Astha Maths or eights maths of Udupi were like a family. Just as there were differences in a family, there were many differences among the Ashta Maths. He would put in efforts to ensure that such an incident was not repeated, the Seer said.