Pranav Kumar Swami,16,the only one literate among the three who committed suicide,had dropped out at class IX,said his uncle Vijay Kumar. Obsessed with the maharaj,Pranav refused to leave the mutt following a visit one day and stayed there since.
The family hails from Chowli village,where the mutt is located. Akash,a cousin,said they shifted a decade ago to Bidar where Pranavs father,Raj Kumar,opened a teastall.
Pranav used to accompany his parents on their frequent visits to the mutt. During once visit,Pranav said he wanted to stay back. Nothing could change his mind. Eventually,they left him at the mutt where he served the maharaj, Akash said. Except for occasional visits from his parents,they rarely kept in touch. The family is in shock and his mother,Sridevi,has become unwell.
Pranavs grandfather,Anappa,said the family owned a field next to the mutt and Pranav got attracted to the maharajs spiritual discourses. He would go there every Monday and Thursday,before deciding to dedicate his life there. A young life has been lost and we do not know the real reason, Anappa said.
Veera Reddy Swami was a farm labourer,often out of work and regularly drinking when he joined the mutt.
I spoke with him the day before this happened, said Siddha Reddy,his brother. He sounded happy and gave no hint about it.
We are shocked but we know how much Guruji meant to him, said Lalita,Veera Reddy Swamis daughter. Before he joined the mutt 12 years ago,he was out of work and drinking. He wanted peace of mind and said he found it at the mutt, she added. It is sad the way he died. It must have been painful but if he felt he would join his Guruji by doing this,he must have gone happily.
The family hails from Narayankhed in Medak district of Andhra Pradesh.