Kanchipuram, Feb 28: Jayendra Saraswati, who broad based the activities of the Sankara Mutt with inclusive activities, died here on Wednesday in a private hospital. He was 82. The 69th pontiff of the Mutt, established by Adi Shankaracharya in the 8th century, was ailing for quite some time. He was admitted to a private hospital here early on Wednesday after he complained of breathlessness. Doctors said the pontiff died following cardiac arrest. His last rites will be conducted on Thursday and his body will be interred in the Mutt premises itself in accordance with traditions followed for Hindu seers. The mortal remains of Jayendra Saraswati were kept at the ndavam in Kanchi mutt for devotees to offer their prayers. He would be given ‘maha samadhi’ at the ndavam, near the Chandrasekarendra Sarawathi Swami’s. Meanwhile, junior pontiff Vijayendra Sarawati was elevated and given the charge of heading the mutt.
Kanchi seer Jayendra Saraswati dead, condolences pour in
Born Subramaniyam Mahadevan on July 18, 1935, in Irulneekki in erstwhile Thanjavur district, Jayendra Saraswathi was anointed successor to the Mutt by Sri Chandrasekarendra Saraswati Swamigal and was given the title Sri Jayendra Saraswati on March 22, 1954. Jayendra Saraswati had a huge following in South India and had sought to play the role of a mediator in the Ram Janmabhoomi dispute during the BJP governments headed by Atal Bihari Vajpayee between 1998 and 2004.
He was also mired in controversy when he was arrested in 2004 during the regime of late J. Jayalalithaa and made an accused in the murder of Sankararaman, an official of the famous Varadharaja Perumal Temple in Kanchipuram. He, along with junior pontiff of the Mutt Vijayendra Saraswati and 21 others, was acquitted by a court in 2013 in neighbouring Puducherry where the case was transferred from Tamil du. (IANS)