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Unhealthy politics over Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa’s condition

Jaya unwell Updated: Oct 06, 2016 13:55 IST
KV Lakshmana

A supporter of Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa hangs from a crane from hooks pierced into his back for 45 minutes as a prayer for her well being. (V Srinivasulu/HT Photo)

As Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa recovers in a hospital, the state government is slated to respond to a Madras high court directive seeking details of her condition on Thursday.

The high court’s order followed a PIL filed by social activist Traffic Ramaswamy on Monday that sought a clarification on the chief minister’s health, saying the public had a right to know.

A fortnight ago, Jayalalithaa was admitted at the Apollo Hospital in Chennai with complaints of high fever and dehydration. But with little information being made public since, her health condition has become a political issue, with the Opposition posing questions and seeking proof of her well being.

Such has been the speculation that the Chennai Police even issued a warning stating that anyone spreading misinformation will be booked under the IT Act.

Read | The health of Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa is a matter of public concern

But an ugly political spat has ensued after DMK patriarch M Karunanidhi sought a visual proof of the chief minister in addition to the bulletins being given out by the hospital. His demand evoked a sharp response from the ruling AIADMK, with its senior leadership rejecting the demand.

“We never asked why Stalin keeps going abroad or sought any proof from anyone. It is clear that on every front the DMK is losing and has no issue to go to the people and is taking up issues that no one should,” AIADMK spokesperson, CR Saraswathi, told Hindustan Times.

“It is very cheap politics for the DMK chief to ask a lady who is unwell for her pictures. Did Karunanidhi or his family release any pictures when Murasoli Maran was in hospital for two years. We never asked for such things as we do not do such cheap politics. It is the forte of the DMK and its chief,” she added.

Also read | CM Jayalalithaa in hospital, her adviser is in Tamil Nadu hot seat