Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa experienced mood swings during her hospitalisation in 2016, a doctor who treated her told the inquiry panel investigating her death, PTI reported. The Justice A Arumughaswamy Commission of Inquiry quoted anaesthetist and the former chief minister’s critical care duty doctor, identified as Shilpa, in its report.
Jayalalithaa died on December 5, 2016, after more than two months in the hospital. The ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam-led state administration had set up the commission following allegations about the circumstances of her death.
The doctor, who attended to the former AIADMK chief, said her mood would fluctuate. “Sometimes she would smile, sometimes she would say ‘leave me alone’,” the doctor purportedly said. She attended to the former chief minister between October 1 and December 4, 2016.
The panel has opposed a petition submitted by Apollo Hospitals seeking the setting up of a 21-member medical board to assist it in its inquiry and help examine the medical records related to her treatment. In its affidavit, Apollo Hospitals claimed that errors have crept into the depositions of doctors recorded by a typist for the panel, The Times of India had reported.
The panel said Dr Shilpa was cross-examined by the counsel for the first respondent in the case, VK Sasikala, who was Jayalalithaa’s associate, and not the hospital’s counsel.
The commission said the hospital has admitted to her deposition which “proved that Chief Minister had cardiac arrest on the evening of December 4, 2016.” “That is the reason the counsel for the applicant hospital has not put any question even though Dr Shilpa was present before this commission on two occasions,” it said.
The panel added that Health Secretary J Radhakrishnan also ruled out the need for a medical panel.