Moradabad/New Delhi, 27th April 2021: Shri Nirmal Kumar Sethiji, the National President of Bharatavarshiya Digambar Jain Mahasabha breathed his last today at around 10:45 PM here at Teerthanker Mahaveer University Hospital at Moradabad. He passed away due to Covid-19 related complications. He was admitted about 5 days back due to Covid-19 and passed away due to Covid-19 related symptoms. His son Dharmendra Kumar Sethi (Jain) was beside Sri Nirmalji chanting Namokar Mahamantra during his last few hours.
Aged about 80 years Sri Sethiji had his roots in Rajasthan. His ancestors originated from Deh village in Nagaur District of Rajasthan and had later migrated to Assam. Sri Sethiji was born on 8th July 1938 at Tinsukia in Assam. His father was Sri Harakchandji Sethi and his mother was Smt Sohini Deviji. Elected in 1981 as the president of Bharatavarshiya Digambar Jain Mahasabha, Sethiji is the longest-serving president of the 127 years old organization founded in 1894. Mahasabha grew and across leaps and bounds under his leadership. He has contributed immensely to the propagation, restoration, and preservation of Jain heritage and archaeology. He had dedicated his life towards Jainism in all forms for over 50 years. He was the Swagatadhyaksha of the Sri Bahubali Swamy Mahamastakabisheka – 2006 at Shravanabelagola and was the president of the NRI committee of Sri Bahubali Swamy Mahamastakabisheka – 2018. He was bestowed with the title of Shravaka Ratna by His Holiness SwastiSri Charukeerthi Bhattarakha Swamiji of Shravanabelagola.
Condolence message from His Holiness Jagadguru SwastiSri Dr. Devendrakeerthi Bhattarakha Swamiji, Jain Math, Hombuja/Humcha – We got the message of the sad demise of Shri Nirmal Sethiji on the night of 27th April 2021. He was a donor, a dedicated sevak to the society, a staunch follower of Jainism. He served and the president of Bharatavarshiya Digambar Jain Mahasabha for a long period of 40 years. He was a person of simplicity who lived up to Jain values. Nirmal Kumarji used to have very his respects towards all the Jain Maths and Bhattarakh Swamijis. He was a great devotee of Sri Kshetra Hombuja. His sad demise is an irreparable loss to his family, Jain community and his friends. We wish his soul attain Sadgathi. We pray for Sri Parshwanath Tirthankar and Goddess Padmavati to bestow the strength to his family to overcome the challenge time.successfully”, SwastiSri Dr. Devendrakeerthi Bhattarakha Swamiji, Jain Math, Hombuja/Humcha.
Condolence message by His Holiness Swasti Sri Charukeerthi Bhattarakha Swamiji of Moodabidri Jain Math – “The loss of Sri Nirmal Kumar Sethiji is an irreparable loss to the Jain community. He was an experienced organizer, protector of Jain culture and heritage, he had organized many seminars in India and abroad on various aspects of Jain Heritage and Archaeology. Even in his old age, he had traveled to the USA, Canada, Mexico, Ethiopia, and many European countries. He was Muni Bhakt who had served many Digambar Jain Acharya’s such as Acharya Vimalasagarji, Deshbhushaji, Vidyanandaji, Dharmasagarji, Vardhamansagarji, Aryikas such as Vishudhamathiji, Suparshwamathiji and Suvratamathiji. He also had great respect towards the Bhattarakha Swamijis and a great Shravaka. We pray for his family to be empowered with the strength to bear his loss and let his soul attain Sadgathi,” said His Holiness Swasti Sri Charukeerthi Bhattarakha Swamiji of Moodabidri Jain Math.
Condolence Message from Prof. Hampana, Bengaluru – “Very very sad to hear the demise of Nirmal Kumar Seth ji, a great soul. He has carved a niche in the Hall of fame by his tireless and matchless services to the community for over six decades. Traveling the length and breadth of India he had dedicated all his time to rejuvenate and reinforce the Jaina Sangha. His was always one point program, to reform and resurrect meaningful ancient traditional treasure of Jainism. In recent years he concentrated on spreading the cherished eternal values of jinavani abroad by organizing seminars. He focused and inspired scholars to trace jaina vestiges and imprints in Africa, Europe and Srilanka. He was truly a crusader and a Messenger of our times. His body has departed but his contribution to restore and revive Glory of Jainism continues to guide us. May his soul rest in peace,” said prof Hampana (Hamapa Nagarajaiah) a renowned Jain scholar.
Condolence message from Dr. H.A.Parshwanath, Mysuru/Mysore – It is very shocking to hear about the sad demise of Sri Nirmal Kumar Sethiji. He was a man of vision who always strived for the protection, restoration and conservation of Jainism, Jain Heritage and Jain archeology. He dedicated his entire life for Jainism. The way he used to encourage academicians, researchers, scholars and youngesters researching on Jainism and Jain heritage is just remarkable. We have lost a great soul, it is indeed an irreparable loss to Jainism.
Condolence Message from Sahu R.P.Jain, New Delhi – “It is very shocking to hear that Sethiji is no more. He was the most hard-working and committed Jain Shravaka I have ever seen in the Jain community. He contributed to the Jain community in all forms through his Tan, Man, and Dhan. His sad demise is a great loss to the Jain community particularly the Digambar Jain community. I have been very closely associated with him for over 3 decades and worked with him on several Jain projects. We were at loggerheads many times, but for the right cause, i.e. Jainism, and finally used to agree upon things and work on Jain projects. The Jain community will never find such a leader in the future. I had spoken to him a fortnight back about publishing an English translation of the Tamil Jain literary work and he had agreed to it. His contribution to the conservation, restoration and propagation of Jain heritage and archeology in India and abroad is immense.I have lost my elder brother Nirmalbhai. It’s an irreparable loss to the Jain community,” said Sri Sahu R.P.Jain of New Delhi.
Condolence Message from Manish Mehta, JAINA, USA – “Oh No! What a great setback and loss for entire global Jain community. We just spoke to him on Sunday morning during his weekly webinar, and he was struggling to talk so we asked him to rest…Nirmalji and his passion for Jain studies will be greatly missed. Hardik Shraddhanjali for his soul which I am sure was greatly elevated in this rich life from all his wonderful contributions to promote and preserve Jainism. He travelled to several JAINA Conventions since I first invited him to speak in Houston in 2011. He came with his son Late Parasji. Both were such warm, simple and very genuine persons. Nirmalji will be remembered forever,” said Sri Manish Mehta Chair of JAINA Diaspora Committee, Federation of Jain Associations in North America (JAINA), USA.
Condolence Message from Sri Vinod Doddannavar, Belagavi, Karnataka – Extremely shocked by the sudden demise of Shri Nirmal Kumar Sethiji who has been a great source of inspiration to all of us. His lifelong towards research about Jainism has been exemplary. I consider myself to be fortunate to have had the opportunity to work closely with him for the past two decades more so during the Mahamastakabhisheka Mahotsav at Shravanabelagola which strengthened further in the later days. His pleasing and energetic personality, deep knowledge and strong passion towards Jain religion and relentless efforts towards tracing it’s roots, publishing books dedicated to Jainism and constant travels across the world in this connection had won him a great following of people who respected his efforts. Jain samaj will forever remain indebted to him for his lifelong service. I am personally overwhelmed by this loss and pray to Jineshwar to bestow his family with the strength to tide over this painful time.
Condolence Message from Vikas Jain, New Delhi – I had been working with Sethiji over the past 10 years managing the finances of Mahasabha at Delhi. It is a great loss to Digambar Jain community and Mahasabha. It is hard to find such a great soul who dedicated his life towards Jainism, Jain heritage and Archaeology,” said Shri Vikas Jain of New Delhi.
Condolence Message from Prof. Ajith Prasad, Moodabidri – “I have lost a fatherly figure in my life. He was my God father in the field of Jainism who took me to various countries of the world for the study of Jainism. I am short of words to express as to how shocking this is. I have stayed with him for more than a month during these visits and have closely worked with him. It is hard to find such a person We have lost a great leader, this is a huge loss to Jainism,” said Prof. Ajith Prasad of Moodabidri.
Condolence Message from Nitin H P, WWW.JAINHERITAGECENTRES.COM Bengaluru – “It is very shocking to hear the sad demise of Sri Sethiji. It is a huge loss to the Jain community, particularly the Digambar Jain community. His contribution in the field of Jain heritage, archaeology, and its conservation is immense. He had sponsored and was part of many international Jain expeditions that had traveled to countries like Srilanka, Ethiopia, Africa, Greece, Germany, Nepal, Srilanka, Peru (South America), Greece, Guatemala, and others. He was an inspiration to thousands of youngsters like me. I was blessed to work closely with him during the Shravanabelgola Bahubali Mahamasthakabhisheka Mahotsavas in 2006 and 2018. Because of his support and funding we were able to work collaboratively with ‘Jain Heritage and Archaeology Pavilion’ as a joint initiative of Bharatavarshiya Digambar Jain Mahasabha and WWW.JAINHERITAGECENTRES.COM. We learned many aspects of Jainism and life while working with him closely on this project. A few months back when Prof. A Ekambaranathan had passed away Nirmal Bhai Sahab had asked me to suggest a book on Jain heritage authored by Ekambaranathan. I had proposed to abut republishing “Jaina Inscriptions in Tamil Nadu a Topographical List”. He had agreed to republish 2,000 copies of this book. When we struggle to find publishers to publish a book with 500 copies. Nirmal UncleJi had agreed to publish 2,000. This is what is his commitment to Jainism. Just a month and a half back on 14th March 2021 while I presented my lecture on ‘Sallekhana Inscriptions of Karnataka’ at a webinar organized by Mahasabha, he promised to extend his support to different projects on Jain Heritage being taken up by our website. We spoke to him just 2 days back during a webinar organized by Mahasabha wherein he had logged in from the hospital in spite of being admitted. That was his level of commitment to Jainism. He was a fatherly figure to many Jain heritage activists and researchers like me who was always on his toes to support Jain Heritage and archaeology initiatives. Whom do we look up to now? May his soul attain Sadgathi”, said Nitin HP, founder and executive director of the website WWW.JAINHERITAGECENTRES.COM.
Condolence Message from Prof Kanaka Ajithadoss, Chennai – 🙏🙏🙏🌹Heartfelt condolences.
Once wrote to us and insisted ( me and mr.Rajendrs Prasad ) to join the team to visit SriLanka to identify Jaina vestiges and connection with Tamilnadu ( as Tamilnadu and Srilanka had land continuity) retrieve the evidences .
Due to other committed commitments we could not make it . I used to write articles in the journal published by Bharatavarshiya Digambar Jain Maha Sabha.
It is an irreplaceable loss to.the thinning voiceless less united Digamber jain community .
I am afraid who could replace Him?
Condolence Message from Brahmanand Chipre, Jain Heritage Activist, Belagavi – He was and will always be a gem of a person who always fought for the uplifting of Jainism and Jain Heritages. Under his leadership Teerth Sanrakshini Mahasabha was able to save many Jain heritages through the country. He was a down to earth person who always recognized genuine people and held hands to uplift them with every possible support. He was the longest serving president in the history of the Shri Bharatvarshiya Digambar Jain Mahasabha organisation for 40 long years since 1981.
Myself and Nitin ji HP were lucky enough to meet him in person during Mahamastakabhsheka in Shravanbelgola in 2018. He supported us in every aspect for our Jain Heritage Exhibition financially and also through his kind and supportive words. With his blessings we were able to showcase ourselves in front of a large audience. His face always showcased a glow which said “I will not stop until I achieve”. With this motto he moved around the world to find the old jaina remains and he set us the example of Ethiopia and Greece, where in he and his team were able to find the remains of Jaina sites and they had fought to get them noted with their local governments. Such a dedication for jainism.
But God has his own plans and he is always waiting for such good heart’ed persons in his adobe.
We will really miss him. My Condolences to his family and the organisation.
Rest in peace Nirmalji, You will always be remembered and stay in our hearts.
Condolence message from Dr. Niranjan Kumar, Sringeri – Nirmalji was responsible for protection and renovation of jain temple sringeri he used to visit our house we are very sad to loose this great gentleman may his soul rest in peace.
Condolence Message from Mital Lalan, Madurai – “I’m in short of words to explain what a great loss it is to the entire Jain society, especially for the Digambar samaj he is irreplaceable. He was the President of All India Digambar Mahasabha. His mission to explore the spread of Jainism outside India in ancient times, his visits country to country, funding researches, conducting seminars & webinars, inviting scholars from different countries, dedicating all his life and savings for Jainism – will stand as an extraordinary example in today’s world. I saw him as the only leader in Jains to have taken so much interest in Jain archaeology. He will be truly missed.
Just last week I spoke to him for the Gyan vapi Issue and been trying to call him last 2 days, but his phone was switched off. Little that I knew until last evening that he is in the ICU having a tough fight with Corona. Thought he will recover….”, said Mital Lalan from Madurai.
Condolence Message from Dr.Neeraja Nagendra Kumar, Bengaluru – “The sad demise of Sri Nirmal Kumar Sethiji is a shock to the Indian Jain community. I wish his soul attain sadgathi on behalf of the entire Jain community,” said Dr. Neeraja Nagendra Kumar, executive committee member of Karnataka Jain Association.
Condolence Message from Jaikumar Chaugule – His contributions towards jain community from last 50 years is unforgettable. No one can fill this gap
Pray to bhagawant. May his soul attain Sadgathi.
Condolence message from Brahmesh K G Karadi – Mr. Nirmal kumar sethi passes away, he is national president for Digamber jain maharaj sabha, he dedicated his to improve and sage guard jainism, great loss to jain community, prayed for his sad demise & prayed for his soul to attain sadgathi.
– Jain Heritage Centres News Service & Nitin H P