A special chartered flight took seven ministers, including chief minister Prithviraj Chavan and deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar, to Chennai on Wednesday afternoon to visit Union science and technology minister Vilasrao Deshmukh, who was admitted to Global Health City hospital with cirrhosis and multiple organ failure on Monday evening.
Another eight state cabinet ministers also paid the former Maharashtra chief minister a visit. While none of them were allowed to go to the ICU to see him, Chavan, Pawar and the others were closeted with Deshmukh’s family members, including film star-son, Riteish.
They left without speaking to waiting mediapersons in deference to the family’s wishes.
“Only his [Deshmukh’s] wife is allowed to meet him. The family told us he was responding well to the medication and his condition was better. He is still on life support and the decision on liver transplant will be taken later,” said relief and rehabilitation minister Patangrao Kadam.
Another minister said Deshmukh was taken off the ventilator for one-and-a-half minutes every few hours to see if he could function without the life-support systems. The minister said the former CM was conscious and the infection in his blood was under control.
However, hospital sources said there was no improvement in Deshmukh’s condition. “The situation is the same as it was last evening — stable, but on life support. He has to remain under observation for two or three days,” a source said.
A statement from the office of the chairman of Global Health City, said on Wednesday, “Vilasrao is stable. First, he has to improve. Then we will think about a liver transplant.”
State’s rural development minister Jayant Patil while speaking to the media said after Wednesday’s development, there was hope for improvement. The other ministers who visited Deshmukh include public works minister Chhagan Bhujbal, home minister RR Patil, agriculture minister Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, revenue minister Balasaheb Thorat, minister of state for home Satej Patil, among others.