NAGAPATTINAM, INDIA, December 5, 2019 (New Indian Express): The 26th Guru Maha Sannidhanam of Dharmapuram Aadheenam Shanmuga Desiga Gnansambandha Paramachariya Swamigal died in a hospital at Thanjavur on Wednesday afternoon. He was 93. The cremation will take place on Thursday. Ilaya Sannithanam Srilasri Maasilamani Desiga Swamigal is expected to take over as Guru Maha Sannidhanam. [An aadheenam is a Saivite Hindu monastic institution.]
Born to Kandasamy Pillai and Kalyani Ammaiyar at Kattumannarkoil in Cuddalore on April 21, 1926, Gnanasambandham, as he was known earlier, studied in Thevara Padasalai in Vriddhachalam and worked as honorary professor in the institute in the late 1940s and early 1950s. He was drawn towards religious work at an early age and was part of the management of Chennai Religious Centre.
Gnanasambandham received Dheeksha in Dharmapuram Aadheenam in 1951 and eventually succeeded the 25th Guru Maha Sannidhanam on November 11, 1971. His contributions include adding hymns to Thevaram. He also established a religious research Centre with Bharatidasan University. DMK president MK Stalin extended condolence over the demise of the Gurumaha Sannidhanam. "He engaged himself in various social services, including religious activities, offering medical service to people and educational assistance to poor," Stalin said. AMMK general secretary TTV Dhinakaran said, "He served Saivites and Tamil."