Chennai: Veteran politician and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa passed away on Monday late evening. After initial media reports of her death were rubbished by Apollo Hospital, where she was under treatment, the hospital released a statement at 11.30 pm confirming her demise. She was 68.
“It is with indescribable grief that we announce the sad demise of esteemed CM,” the statement from the hospital declared. The AIADMK leader suffered a cardiac arrest on Sunday evening.
Jayalalithaa was under treatment here since September 22 after she complained of fever and dehydration.
News of her Sunday heart attack had left her followers across the state wailing and praying already and gave flocked to the hospital. Some death cases were also reported out of grief and panic over the CM’s health.
Police has taken over the hospital to avoid any untoward incident resulting from a shock reaction by the public.
The six time Tamil Nadu CM who started off as a popular actress in 1960s joined politics at AIADMK founder Ramachandran’s behest. She emerged to be one of the most popular and powerful politicians of the country.
Top leaders of the country, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President Pranab Mukherjee and many others including Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik condoled her death.
Fondly called as Amma, she had once said in May 2012, “Biju Patnaik was like a father figure to me; Naveen Patnaik is my brother.”
Speaker Dhanapal will be meeting Governor Vidyasagar Rao to discuss the succession and Panneerselvam could be made interim chief minister.