Lingayat community seer Siddalinga Swamiji of Tontadarya Mutt passed away in Karnataka's northwest Gadag region following a cardiac arrest.
The Lingayat seer, who died on Saturday morning, was 69.
According to reports, when the pontiff did not come out of his room till 9 am on Saturday, he was rushed to the hospital where he was pronounced dead upon arrival.
His funeral will be held in Gadag on Sunday and will be attended by his followers from across Karnataka.
Recalling the pontiff as a rare voice of progress, rationalism, and agrarianism, Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy mourned the demise of Swamiji and said, "Swamiji was active in various people's movement against blind beliefs, environmental and other issues. He had devotees across all communities. May God bless his soul and give strength to his followers to endure this huge loss."
A native of Korawad village in Vijayapura district, Siddalinga Swamiji was known as 'Kannadada Jagadguru' (Seer of Kannada).
He also authored and published many books as the head of his congregation.