Disputes claim that Ministers were present when Jayalalithaa had heart attack
Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami on Sunday alleged that former Chief Secretary P. Rama Mohana Rao had claimed that certain Ministers were present at the Apollo Hospitals when AIADMK leader Jayalalithaa suffered a cardiac arrest on December 4, 2016, only to shield somebody.
Mr. Rao had reportedly told the Justice Arumughaswamy Commission of Inquiry, which is probing Jayalalithaa’s hospitalisation and death, that Electricity Minister P. Thangamani, Municipal Administration Minister S.P. Velumani, Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker M. Thambi Durai and a few others were present when Jayalalithaa suffered a cardiac arrest.
Besides, he had reportedly told the Commission that the idea of taking the then Chief Minister Jayalalithaa abroad for treatment was dropped as a group of Ministers did not revert to him.
Mr. Palaniswami told journalists in Coimbatore that Mr. Rao had made those statements to let somebody off the hook. His statements were contrary to truth.
Earlier in the day in Namakkal, Mr. Thangamani said Mr. Rao was spreading this falsehood to satisfy some vested interests whom he had met in Thanjavur a few days ago.
Mr. Thangamani alleged that he, along with a few other Ministers under the leadership of M. Thambi Durai, Deputy Speaker of the Lok Sabha, approached Mr. Rao, the then Chief Secretary, two or three times requesting him to explore the possibility of taking Jayalalithaa abroad for treatment. Mr. Rao allegedly assured them that he would revert on the subject. But he did not.
Now, Mr. Rao had informed the Commission of Inquiry probing Jayalalithaa’s death that he discussed the possibility of taking Jayalalithaa abroad with various Ministers for four or five consecutive days, but dropped the idea after the Ministers did not revert to him. “This is an utter lie,” Mr. Thangamani said.
The Electricity Minister also denied the statement of Mr. Rao that he and Mr. Velumani were at the Apollo Hospitals when Jayalalithaa suffered a cardiac arrest.
Mr. Thangamani said that he along with V. Saroja, Social Welfare Minister, was participating in a prayer at a temple in R. Pudhupatti village in Namakkal district, when they got the news that Jayalalithaa had suffered a severe heart attack. “Later, I rushed to Chennai by catching a flight from Tiruchi.”
Mr. Velumani was in Thiruvananthapuram at that time. “As such, how could Velumani and myself be present at the Apollo Hospitals when Jayalalithaa suffered a heart attack,” he asked.