Tamil Nadu: Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa dies at 68

Story By: Govind Singh
Tuesday, December, 06 2016 - 10:20

Tamil Nadu’s Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa died at 11.30 pm on Monday after a 74-day battle for life.

Jayalalithaa (68), breathed her last at the Apollo Hospital, Chennai, over 24 hours after she suffered a cardiac arrest on Sundayevening and was rushed back to the Intensive Care Unit or ICU.

Jayalalithaa was admitted to the Apollo Hospital on September 22 with fever and dehydration.

"It is with indescribable grief, we announce the sad demise of our esteemed Honourable Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Puratchi Thalaivi Amma at 11.30 pm," the hospital said in a statement.

Her body will be kept at the Rajaji Hall for people to pay their respects.

Jayalalithaa, actor-turned-politician, headed the AIADMK for nearly three decades after the death of her mentor and Chief Minister MG Ramachandran or MGR. She was a five-time Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu.

Two hours after the announcement of her death O Panneerselvam was sworn in as the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister at the Raj Bhawan along with all the ministers in the erstwhile Jayalalithaa Cabinet.

The Tamil Nadu Government declared seven-day mourning. Schools and colleges in the sprawling state will be closed for three days.

President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice-President Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, vice-president Rahul Gandhi, Home Minister Rajnath Singh and a number of film personalities have expressed grief over her death. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted, "Deeply saddened at the passing away of Selvi Jayalalithaa. Her demise has left a huge void in Indian politics. My thoughts and prayers are with the people of Tamil Nadu in this hour of grief. May the Almighty grant them the strength to bear this irreparable loss with courage and fortitude," adding, "Jayalalithaa ji's connect with citizens, concern for welfare of the poor, the women and marginalized will always be a source of inspiration."

Parliament on Tuesday condoled the death of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa saying the country has lost a courageous and charismatic leader, before adjourning the proceedings for the day as a mark of respect for the departed soul.

After paying tributes to Jayalalithaa, who was also a Rajya Sabha member from 1984-89, members in both Houses stood in silence for a brief while.


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