Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam chief Karunanidhi offered his “deep condolences” after All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam chief Jayalalithaa was declared dead by Chennai’s Apollo Hospital at 11.30 pm on Monday night. ”[The] wishes of lakhs of her followers will make her immortal,” he said, according to The Indian Express. Karunanidhi is himself in hospital for a drug-induced allergy and is likely to be discharged in a few days.
His son, MK Stalin tweeted, “Deeply saddened by the demise of our CM Selvi Jayalalithaa. My deepest condolences to the party cadres and well wishers in this hour of grief.” Stalin called her an “iconic and courageous leader” and said her death was an “irreparable loss to the people of Tamil Nadu”. He also paid his respects to the late chief minister at Rajaji Hall later in the day.
The DMK is the largest Opposition party in the state. Both Karunanidhi and Stalin, among other DMK leaders and opposing parties, had consistently questioned the AIAMDK’s bulletins on Jayalalithaa’s health. They had expressed doubts each time her party had claimed her condition was improving, even asking them to release her photo to prove that she was alright. Stalin had visited Jayalalithaa in hospital on October 8.