offers homage to Pandit Raghu Nath Kukiloo
deeply condoles the passing away of Pandit Raghu
Nath Kukiloo - saint, scholar and astrologer of
great reputation popularly known as "Baigaash".
The news of his sad demise was received with great
shock by the exiled Kashmiri Pandit community
which is already reeling under the impact of
losing two of its best known scholars, Prof P. N.
Pushp and Pandit Janki Nath Kaul 'Kamal' in just
one year or so.
end came on December 23, 1997 at about 3 P.M. when
Pandit Kukiloo had just finished distributing
Prasaad among devotees and disciples after his
daily worship and had hardly taken a morsel or two
of his lunch, according to "Maalini",
the quarterly journal of Ishwar Ashram Trust,
Ishber, Srinagar. Suddenly, says the journal, he
felt the divine effulgence of Kundalini engulfing
him. Trying to address the divine presence, he
went into a trance from which he never woke up.
Pandit Raghu Nath Kukiloo has, however, left
behind him his hallowed memories for the host of
his disciples and admirers in the community who
looked to him for guidance in spiritual as well as
mudane matters. They regarded him as a great yogi,
an erudite scholar and a master of astrology
gifted with the extraordinary power of
in a scholarly family in the Banamohalla locality
of Srinagar in the year 1911, the widely respected
Pandit was spiritually inclined from childhood. A
Shakta by faith, he was a devotee of the Goddess
Tripurasundari When in Srinagar he would never
miss the daily Parikrama (circumambulance) of
Sharika Devi at Hari Parvat, according to Shri R.C.
Kaul Pamposh an old discipie of Pandit Kukiloo.
While he had fathomed the depths of the Shakta
philosophy of Kashmir, which he would interpret in
his own unique manner, Pandit Kukiloo's
understanding of the Vedantic and Shaiva
philosophies was equally profound. He was known
for his performance of the annual Pancharatra puja
on the occasion of Mahashivaraatri.
Kukiloo is said to have had a close association
with the great Shaivaacharya of Kashmir, Swami
Lakshman Joo. Swamiji would make it a point to
obtain the blessings of Pandit Kukiloo on his
birthday, showing in what high esteem he held him.
Raghu Nath was a sensitive soul who was moved by
the sufferings of the people which he tried to
mitigate in his own way through the methods of
astrology. The number of people who believed that
he could divine the future through accurate
astrological predictions was legion, the Pandit
having become a living legend in Kashmir. But what
endeared him to everyone was his readiness to make
himself available to the elite and the commoner
alike for consultation and help.
hundreds of thousands of his suffering community
men, Pandit Kukiloo was forced to leave Kashmir in
1990 under the terrorist threat and take residence
at Jammu where he continued with his scholarly and
spiritual occupations at 29, Ashok Nagar till his
conveying its heartfelt sympathies to the bereaved
members of his family, NSKRI joins the entire
Kashmiri Pandit community in paying its humble
homage to the departed saint and scholar.
Vivek Raina for providing the pictures.