Jayalalithaa’s death-Hospital denies news reports

Chennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa is still alive, Apollo Hospitals said on Monday, after a TV report about her death sparked scuffles and mass frenzy outside the hospital.
The Apollo hospital hurriedly denied the Sun TV report which claimed the AIADMK leader had passed away. “A large number of doctors from Apollo and AIIMS continue to provide all life saving measures,” said a tweet from Sangita Reddy, Managing Director of Apollo Hospitals. Jayalalithaa’s death
Minister Venkaiah Naidu at Apollo Hospital
 
Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu at Apollo Hospital #jayalalithaa pic.twitter.com/4mPEPIlKGt— ANI (@ANI_news) December 5, 2016
But before the clarification came, the TV report triggered frenzy both outside the hospital, where thousands had gathered since Jayalalithaa suffered a cardiac arrest on Sunday, and at the AIADMK headquarters. A group of emotionally charged AIADMK activists tried to barge into the hospital after breaking the police barricades but were pushed back by the police.
Television footage showed crowds praying for the chief minister, who is known simply as “Amma” (mother), many of them in tears. “Amma should survive. I won’t mind if my life is taken away, but Amma should live,” one supporter cried. Many others simply broke down, unable to check their emotions. There were loud cries of “Amma, Amma!”
At the AIADMK headquarters in Chennai, the party flag was brought down to half-mast. It was restored to its original position once the Apollo statement came. Inside, hundreds of people wept on hearing the Sun TV report. “How can you leave us?” cried one man.
Doctors treating the 68-year-old former film star, who enjoys an almost god-like status in Tamil Nadu, say she is in critical condition and on life support. “The treating doctors are continuing all life saving measures. #GodblessAmma,” the hospital tweeted.
Several of Jayalalithaa’s supporters resorted to self-harm when she was briefly jailed in 2014 on charges of corruption.
 
Jayalalitha’s condition ‘very critical’: hospital
Chennai: Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalitha continues to be very critical and is on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) and life support systems, said Apollo Hospitals in a statement on Monday.
“The chief minister is being treated and closely monitored by a team of experts,” said the statement issued by Apollo Hospitals chief operating officer Subbiah Viswanathan. A team of doctors from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences would land in Chennai later this afternoon, doctors said.
Earlier, Jayalalitha’s party AIADMK briefly lowered its flag to half-mast at its headquarter, only to be hoisted it again after the hospital’s clarification.
 
#WATCH: Party flag hoisted again at AIADMK HQs in Chennai #jayalalithaa pic.twitter.com/8dAqqTwjSc— ANI (@ANI_news) December 5, 2016
 
#AIADMK raises flag at full mast at party HQ in Royapettah after #Apollo Hospitals’ denial of reports on Jayalalithaa’s health condition.— Press Trust of India (@PTI_News) December 5, 2016
 
Jayalalitha’s situation ‘extremely grave’
The condition of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalitha is “extremely grave,” the London doctor who is being consulted for her treatment said on Monday.
“Unfortunately, and in spite of the progress she had made, her underlying health conditions inevitably meant that the risk of further problems always remained,” Dr Richard Beale said in a statement.
“The situation is extremely grave, but I can confirm that everything possible is being done to give her the best chance of surviving this shocking event. She is being cared for by a highly multi-disciplinary team and is now on extra corporeal life support. This is the most advanced level of support available and is the approach the best centres internationally would take in this situation. That this technology is available in Apollo Chennai reflects the high degree of expertise of this centre and, that at all times, Madam has received exceptional care from Apollo and AIIMS care team, which are equal of any in the world,” he said.
He said his prayers and thoughts were with the chief minister, her family, her carers and the people of Tamil Nadu “at this very difficult time.”
Jayalalithaa, who had a cardiac arrest last evening “continues to be very critical and is on ECMO and other life support systems,” Apollo Hospitals Chief Operating Officer Subbiah Viswanthan said in a statement.  “The Honourable Chief Minister is being treated and closely monitored by a team of experts,” he added.
The 68-year-old has been put on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), a heart assist device, and was under the watch of experts, including cardiologists. The ailing Chief Minister had shown signs of improvement during the last few days before the setback on Sunday.
Police on full alert
The top police officer of Tamil Nadu, T K Rajendran, asked all police personnel to remain on duty from today “until further orders”.
“They should report in full uniform with their vehicles for law and order duty until further orders,” he said. Announcing Jayalalitha’s sudden deterioration in health, a statement by Chief Operating Officer and head of transformation of Apollo Hospitals Dr Subbaiah Viswanathan last night said, “she is being treated and monitored by a team of experts, including cardiologists, pulmonologist and critical care specialists.”
Following the development, Tamil Nadu Governor Vidyasagar Rao, who is also the Governor of Maharashtra, airdashed to the city from Mumbai and visited Apollo Hospitals last night.
US Consulate issues ‘emergency message;
With Chief Minister Jayalalithaa said to be critical, the US Consulate here on Monday issued an “emergency message” for American citizens, asking them to review their personal security plans and remain aware of the local events. 
“US citizens are reminded that even gatherings intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence. You should avoid areas of demonstrations, and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations,” the Consulate said in a message on its official website without any reference to any particular development.
“Review your personal security plans; remain aware of your surroundings, including local events; and monitor local news stations for updates. Maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security,” the message said.
Further, the Consulate General will operate with reduced staffing on Monday, it announced, adding, it has “temporarily suspended appointments for routine services to US citizens and visa applicants… Applicants will be informed by email. The Consulate will provide updates when routine services are restored,” it added.
Party workers throng Apollo Hospials, pray for Jaya
Earlier on Monday morning, scores of All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) workers on Monday gathered at the Apollo Hospitals, with some wailing and other looking dejected over the news of the deterioration in their leader’s health.
Party workers from several districts like Parimala of Tiruvannamalai and Subramanian of North Chennai, who arrived at the hospital, told PTI that “We are waiting. We are confident that we will get good news soon.”
Some people milling around the hospital premises, including AIADMK workers, were seen praying seeking divine intervention so that their party supremo Jayalalithaa recovers. State Ministers including senior Minister P Thangamani, and other top AIADMK functionaries like B Valarmathi, who arrived at the hospital earlier, left for a brief while and returned. Union Minister P Radhakrishnan enquired about Jayalalithaa’s health with hospital authorities and AIADMK leaders.
Rajini, an elder woman party worker from Jayalalithaa’s RK Nagar constituency, was seen praying fervently, tears flowing down her cheeks. She was joined by scores of party women workers from RK Nagar. With more and more people reaching the premises and lining up the approach roads, it resulted in traffic congestion in the neighbourhood. Police are having a tough time in regulating the crowd and ensuring that patients are not inconvenienced even as the hospital remained under tight security cover.
Though the state government has not announced closure of schools and educational institutions, some of them remained closed as the managements took a decision in this regard. Even in schools that were open, thin attendance was reported. Shops and commercial establishments largely remained open, police said.
Party workers, who had gathered in large numbers outside the hospital after news of her cardiac arrest broke, braved midnight rains and continued to wait outside, praying for the recovery of ‘Amma’ (mother), as she is fondly called by her supporters.  Actor and party supporter, ‘Gundu’ Kalyanam, said the party workers had faith in the divine power and expressed confidence that Jayalalithaa would recover.  President Pranab Mukherjee, DMK leader M Karunanidhi, his son and opposition leader K Stalin, Union Ministers, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, Chief Ministers and a host of leaders have expressed concern over Jayalalithaa’s health condition and wished her speedy recovery.
Jayalalithaa was admitted to the hospital on September 22 after she complained of fever and dehydration, and later treated for infection and respiratory problem.
Earlier report
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalitha, who is undergoing treatment at a hospital here, on Sunday suffered a cardiac arrest and is being treated by a team of experts, including cardiologists, Apollo Hospitals said.
“The honourable Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, who is undergoing treatment at Apollo Hospitals, suffered a cardiac arrest this evening.
“She is being treated and monitored by a team of experts, including cardiologists, pulmonologist and critical care specialists,” Chief Operating Officer and head of transformation of Apollo Hospital Dr Subbaiah Viswanathan said in a statement.
The 68-year-old leader suffered the cardiac arrest hours after AIADMK said that Jayalalithaa will return home “soon” as an AIIMS expert team confirmed she has completely recovered after over two months of hospitalisation.
Jayalalitha was hospitalised on September 22 after she complained of fever and dehydration. The hospital, which had been issuing bulletins on her health status, had later said she was being treated for infection with respiratory support, among others.
Apollo Hospitals Chairman Dr C Prathap Reddy had recently said Jayalalitha was in good health and was speaking using a valve attached to the tracheostomy tube.
Whole body physiotherapy was being done, he had said, adding that she was normally recuperating after being in bed for several weeks and would herself decide when to go home.
Earlier in the day, AIADMK spokesperson C Ponnaiyan had told reporters that a three-member expert team from AIIMS, Delhi, had said she had completely recovered.
“The AIIMS doctors visited the hospital yesterday and after examining her (Jayalalithaa’s) health, they shared the good news with us that Amma (as Jayalalithaa is fondly called by AIADMK cadre, meaning mother) has completely recovered”, he had said.
Ponnaiyan said the Chief Minister was doing physical exercises, undergoing physiotherapy, and was having food on her own besides advising officers on issues related to government and party activities.

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Updated: 07/06/2017 — 1:44 AM

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