In Pics: Tamil Nadu mourns its Amma | india-news | Hindustan Times
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In Pics: Tamil Nadu mourns its Amma

From hospitals to the streets, Tamil Nadu is grieving for its chief minister and one of India’s most popular leaders Jayalalithaa.

india Updated: Dec 06, 2016 14:23 IST
HT Correspondent
A child pays tribute to Jayalalithaa at Rajaji Hall in Chennai, where her body rests before cremation.
A child pays tribute to Jayalalithaa at Rajaji Hall in Chennai, where her body rests before cremation. (Bharath Srinivasan/Hindustan Times)

Thousands of supporters are mourning the death of Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa who passed away at midnight at the age of 68.

The movie star-turned-politician was popularly known as Amma by party workers, voters and acolytes. The ailing chief minister suffered a cardiac arrest on December 5.

The AIADMK leader’s Tricolor-draped body was kept at Rajaji Hall in Chennai, as grieving supporters lined up to pay their last respects. Jayalalithaa was one of India’s most popular leaders and had an almost god-like stature in the eyes of her supporters.

The scene outside Rajaji Hall where the body of Tamil Nadu state leader Jayalalithaa rests before cremation. Grief-stricken supporters wailed and mourned the death of their leader. (AFP)

Jayalalithaa’s supporters had kept a steady vigil all through her long treatment at Chennai’s Apollo Hospital. Prayer meetings were organised at temples for her quick recovery.

Jayalalithaa’s supporters wail outside the hospital where she was being treated after rumours of her death started circulating. (AFP)

Since early morning, supporters started congregating at the hospital where she was treated.

Crowds head towards the hospital where Jayalalithaa was under treatment before she passed away. (Bharath Srinivasan/Hindustan Times)

After rumours of her death started circulating, scuffles broke out between the highly emotional crowds at the hospital. Police presence has been beefed up in Chennai to ensure that the outpouring of public sentiment does not result in violence.

Police outside the Chennai hospital where Jayalalithaa was being treated. Security has been strengthened in the state fearing outbreaks of violence. (AFP)

Chennai came to a standstill as the state government declared a seven-day mourning period beginning Tuesday. Schools, colleges, offices and businesses will remain closed for the next three days, which have been designated a public holiday in the state.

An empty railway station at Chetpet, in Chennai. Tamil Nadu’s capital city grinded to a halt, as shops, schools and businesses downed shutters for the next three days, which have been declared a public holiday.

The centre also announced one day of national mourning for the leader and Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day. Leaders across political parties, including prime minister Narendra Modi, will head to Chennai to pay their respects.

The national flag flies at half-mast at Rashtrapati Bhavan as a tribute to the AIADMK leader. (Arun Sharma/Hindustan Times)

Across the country, scenes of grief played out at various places, as people gathered to bid goodbye to Amma.

In Mumbai, the Kamarajar Memorial English School in Dharavi was closed due to Jayalalithaa’s demise. (Kunal Patil/ Hindustan Times)
An emotional supporter at a prayer meeting for Jayalalithaa in Mumbai. (Kunal Patil/Hindustan Times)