India: Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa dies aged 68 after suffering cardiac arrest

The AIADMK supremo was admitted to Apollo Hospital on 22 September after she complained of fever and dehydration


Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa died on Monday after suffering a massive cardiac arrest on 5 December while being treated for a respiratory infection at a city hospital in Chennai, the capital city of the South Indian state.

"It is with indescribable grief, we announce the sad demise of our esteemed honourable Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Puratchi Thalaivi Amma [Jayalalitha] at 11:30pm [IST] (5.12.2-016)," a statement from Apollo, the hospital to which she was admitted, read.

It was reported that the actor-turned-politician suffered a cardiac arrest at around 4:30pm IST on 4 December. Doctors from All India Insitute of Medical Science (AIIMS) in Delhi, were been rushed to Tamil Nadu for her treatment. Moreover, critical care physician Dr. Richard Beale from London, who had treated her earlier, was consulted after her condition was declared critical.

On Sunday at around 2:00 pm (IST), Apollo Hospital's Executive Director Sangita Reddy said that that the Tamil Nadu CM is still very serious. "Despite our best efforts, our beloved CM remains in a grave situation," she said according to ANI.

The 68-year-old AIADMK supremo was admitted to Apollo Hospital on 22 September after she complained of fever and dehydration. Apollo Hospitals chairman Prathap C Reddy said on 12 November that the chief minister's lung infection was now under control and she was due to be discharged soon.

While the doctors insisted that her condition was stable in the next few days, the ruling party of the state All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) tweeted on 27 September that she had convened a meeting at the hospital to discuss an inter-state water dispute issue. After nearly 50 days in the hospital, the chief Minister had released a statement bringing great relief to her supporters. In a signed letter shared by the private hospital, the AIADMK leader thanked her well-wisher saying, "I have taken rebirth because of people's prayers."