Poojya Doddappa Appa 7th Mahadasoha Peethadhipati Sharnbasveshwar Samsthan, Gulbarga
In the lineage of this great philosophy, the seventh descendant of Mahadasoha Peetha, Poojya Doddappa Appa came as a saviour for the people of this backward region, which was suffering the undue double yoke of the Nizam of Hyderabad and the Britishers. It was Doddappa Appa’s firm belief that no creature should be a victim of slavery because he perceived that spirit resides in all creatures. This spiritual attitude and outlook of Poojya Doddappa Appa paved the way for the freedom movement. Back in 1918 when the First World War was still going on and when Osmania University was established in the Nizam’s State, Poojya Doddappa Appa established Sharanabasaveshwar Public Library in Gulbarga region to create awareness and awaken the people of this region. He aimed to arouse the spirit of nationalism, patriotic feelings and intense desire for freedom among the people.
Poojya Doddappa Appa strongly felt that creating awareness among the women folk is as essential as that of the men folk. That was the time when even men were denied educational opportunities and the women were kept behind the Pardha (Veil), when Poojya Doddappa Appa opened the First Girls School that too in Kannada Medium in the year 1934. This school opened a new chapter in the women’s education in the Hyderabad Karnataka region and thus he did his best to serve the cause of women’s education. Poojya Doddappa Appa believed that spiritual attainment is the basis of independence. Therefore, he never failed to perform the ‘Trikala Istalinga Pooja’ and the ‘Guru Jangama Dasoha’, even during the most difficult times. When the Razakars attacked, many people in order to save their lives fled from Gulbarga to Sholapur and other safer places. During one of the hard times, Poojya Doddappa Appa was living with his family at Sholapur but he wanted the traditional Pooja to be continued at the Mahadasoha Peetha. So, he sent his fourteen-year eldest son Sharanabasawappa Appa along with Reverent Sri. Siddalinga Swamy to Gulbarga. Unmindful of the dangers lying ahead, Sharanabasawappa Appa dedicated himself totally to the worship of Shiva. Thus, he maintained the continuity of the pious tradition of performing the pooja. Then itself, Poojya Doddappa Appa, identified the future Peethadhipathi in his eldest son. Poojya Doddappa Appa along with others successfully freed the region from the clutches of the Nizam of Hyderabad in September 1948. Subsequently at the time of reorganization of States in 1956, he played a prominent role and held two national Kannada meets at his Samsthan in Gulbarga.
Poojya Doddappa Appa’s uniqueness lies in strong sense of swadeshi consciousness. Gandhiji discarded foreign clothes and used only swadeshi clothes and thus awakened in the whole of the nation, the spirit of patriotism and national independence. Similarly Poojya Doddappa Appa discarded the weekly holiday on Sunday, which was given to the government servants by the British and also Friday, which was given by the Nizam. He declared Monday as a weekly holiday for all the educational institutions because Monday was regarded as the auspicious day and the real Indian folks’ holiday, for the farmers constitute 80% of the population. Even this irked the Nizam. But, through such resolve, Poojya Doddappa Appa inculcated patriotism and the importance of independence in the people.