Home >politics >policy >Jayalalithaa’s death: A timeline of events

Chennai: Tamil Nadu chief minister J. Jayalalithaa died on Monday night at Apollo Hospital in Chennai. She had suffered a cardiac arrest on Sunday evening, more than 70 days after she was hospitalised for complaints of “fever and dehydration".

In the two months or so between her hospitalisation and her death, secrecy had been maintained around her health status, apart from short updates from the hospital and the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK).

While she was hospitalized, state finance minister O. Panneerselvam was officially allocated the portfolios of Jayalalithaa as an interim arrangement and the AIADMK launched a campaign on Twitter to quell speculation about her health. After her death, Panneerselvam was appointed chief minister.

Here are the updates that were released from time to time about Jayalalithaa’s health status since she was hospitalised. Most of these statements reiterated that the chief minister would be discharged in a few days.

22 September: Jayalalithaa was admitted with complaints of “fever and dehydration".

23 September: The hospital confirmed that her fever was under control and the chief minister had resumed normal diet.

25 September: Doctors and administrators at the hospital denied rumours that Jayalalithaa will be flown abroad for treatment.

29 September: While it was rumoured that necessary evaluation tests were being carried out, Subbiah Viswanathan, chief operating officer of the Apollo hospital, said in a statement, “The honourable chief minister has been advised few days in the hospital for recuperative treatment."

2 October: The hospital confirmed that Dr Richard John Beale, consultant intensivist at the London Bridge Hospital, was flown in from the UK to assess Jayalalithaa’s health status. Without revealing any details, the hospital also said that the treatment plan included “appropriate antibiotics and other allied clinical measures" to treat infection.

3 October: Another statement was issued. “The treatment plan including appropriate antibiotics, respiratory support and other allied clinical measures are presently being continued to treat the infection," it said.

6 October: Another statement mentioned that the chief minister was making “gradual progress" and would require “longer stay at the hospital".

8 October: Following this, it was announced that the hospital is treating her for “lung decongestion". “All the other comprehensive measures including nutrition, supportive therapy and passive physiotherapy are underway," the hospital said. Around the same time, it was also announced that a team of doctors from Delhi’s All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) were treating the chief minister.

21 October: A health bulletin said Jayalalithaa was “interacting and progressing gradually". The update on 21 October was the last official health bulletin from the hospital authorities, until the one on Sunday night mentioned about her cardiac arrest.

13 November: Jayalalithaa in a statement released by AIADMK said: “I have taken a rebirth due to the prayers of the people and my party cadre. What can harm me when I have your love?"

18 November: Apollo Hospital chairman Prathap C. Reddy said Jayalalithaa is able to breathe on her own without respiratory support. Jayalalithaa is being kept on ventilator for 15 minutes daily so that “her lungs could expand" and continues to be kept at the hospital’s critical care unit to avoid infection, Reddy said.

19 November: The AIADMK said the leader was shifted to a special room from the intensive critical care unit.

22 November: Jayalalithaa thanks voters for electing her party’s candidates in polls.

25 November: Reddy says Jayalalithaa speaking using tracheostomy tube valve.

4 December: AIADMK says AIIMS expert team confirms Jayalalithaa has recovered completely. Later in the day, she suffers a cardiac arrest.

5 December: Jayalalithaa put on life support, dies at 11.30pm.

PTI contributed to this story.

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