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Venkaiah Naidu visits Jayalalithaa at hospital, says unfair to spread rumours

Puduchery chief minister V Narayanasamy and leaders of various political parties on Sunday visited the Apollo Hospital to enquire about Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa’s health.

india Updated: Oct 10, 2016 09:51 IST
Aditya Iyer
Aditya Iyer
Hindustan Times
Jayalalithaa,Apollo Hospital,Tamil Nadu
The 68-year-old Jayalalithaa was admitted to the hospital in Chennai last month with fever and dehydration.(AFP Photo)

Union minister Venkaiah Naidu visited the Apollo hospital here on Sunday evening to enquire about ailing Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa’s health.

“I had a detailed briefing by the doctors,” he said outside the hospital. “They said the CM is responding to the treatment. It is not fair to spread rumours about her health. I’m sure she will recover soon.”

The urban minister’s visit —a first for a central minister — comes days after Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi visited the hospital.

Jayalalithaa was admitted to Apollo hospital on September 22 after complaining of a high fever and dehydration.

However, it quickly became apparent that her condition was more serious than that, and a combination of official reticence and cryptic press releases by the hospital exacerbated rumours about her health.

On Friday, it was announced that the 68-year-old had fluid in her lungs and was also being treated for an unspecified illness.

“The respiratory support is closely watched and adjusted. Lungs decongestion treatment is being continued. All other comprehensive measures including nutrition, supportive therapy and passive physiotherapy are under way,” Apollo hospital has said on Saturday.

The state is currently in the odd position, with a hospitalised CM and an acting governor — Vidyasagar Rao is the governor of Maharashtra — and no interim chief minister.

Senior AIADMK leaders O Panneerselvam and Edappadi Palanisamy met with the governor on Friday to discuss the administration of the state, which has so far been directed by Jayalalithaa’s top aide, Sheela Balakrishnan.

While the party has no current plans to appoint an interim CM or deputy CM, it is understood that there may be efforts to temporarily move some of Jayalalithaa’s portfolios to other ministers for administrative purposes.

The Opposition, in the meantime, has called for an interim CM to be appointed from the ranks of the AIADMK.

“Let the next in the hierarchy be appointed interim CM to ensure important matters, such as the ongoing Cauvery dispute, are handled properly,” said DMK leader MK Stalin, who had visited the ailing chief minister earlier.

Puduchery chief minister V Narayanasamy, CPI leader D Raja, Tamil Nadu Congress president S Thirunavukkarasar and Tamil Maanila Congress leader GK Vasan, MMK leader MH Jawahirullah and others also visited the hospital to wish Jayalalithaa speedy recovery.

With inputs from IANS

First Published: Oct 09, 2016 19:10 IST