The latest setback comes after Jayalalithaa's doctors had said she would return home soon. Photograph:( AFP )
Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa was said to be critical after she suffered a cardiac arrest Sunday evening. Jayalalithaa was at the time admitted at Chennai's Apollo Hospital, where she has been undergoing treatment for more than two months. "The honourable Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, who is undergoing treatment at Apollo Hospitals, suffered a cardiac arrest this evening," a statement issued by Apollo Hospital said.
Jayalalithaa was admitted to Apollo on September 22.
"She is being treated and monitored by a team of experts, including cardiologists, pulmonologist and critical care specialists," Chief Operating Officer and head of transformation at Apollo Hospital Dr Subbaiah Viswanathan said in the statement.
Around midnight, Apollo Hospital's joint managing director Sangita Reddy tweeted: "The Apollo TN CM #Jayalalita is critical.multi speciality team @hospitalsapollo trying everything including ecmo.praying for her recovery."
She has been kept under the close observation of a specialist from London, besides a three-member team of doctors from Delhi's All India Institutes of Medical Sciences or AIIMS.
Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa suffered a cardiac arrest this evening, says Apollo Hospital. She is being treated, monitored by experts pic.twitter.com/dUceqoCpW7— ANI (@ANI_news) 4 December 2016
Jayalalithaa, who is the chief minister of India's southern state of Tamil Nadu, was hospitalised on September 22 after complaining of dehydration and fever.
Meanwhile, violence reportedly broke out at the entrance to the hospital.
A heavy security apparatus, including companies of the Armed Reserve and Tamil Nadu Special Police, has been mobilised as a precautionary measure, Indian newspaper The Hindu reported..
Companies of the Central Reserve Police Force in Tamil Nadu and neighbouring states have been put on alert, sources told the daily.
India's Home Minister Rajnath Singh phoned Tamil Nadu Governor Ch. Vidyasagar Rao to enquire about her health. Rao is the governor of Maharashtra state and has the additional responsibility of Tamil Nadu. He is expected to reach Chennai from Mumbai at 11 pm.
The latest setback comes after her doctors had said she would return home soon.
Her party All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) spokesperson C Ponnaiyan had told reporters that Jayalalithaa was undergoing physiotherapy and having food by herself.
Supporters outside Apollo hospital in Chennai break down as they hear about TN CM Jayalalithaa's cardiac arrest this evening. pic.twitter.com/6Cb59Y06h6— ANI (@ANI_news) 4 December 2016
Jayalalithaa, fondly called Amma (mother) by her legion of supporters, has served as the chief minister of Tamil Nadu on five different occasions.
Indian President Pranab Mukherjee took to Twitter to express his concern.
Distressed to hear about CM Jayalalithaa suffering a cardiac arrest, my prayers for her speedy recovery #PresidentMukherjee— President of India (@RashtrapatiBhvn) December 4, 2016
The Apollo hospital has tweeted saying that Jayalalithaa is on extracorporeal membrane heart assist device.
She is on extracorporeal membrane heart assist device and is being treated by a team of expert doctors and critical care specialists.— Apollo Hospitals (@HospitalsApollo) December 4, 2016
All senior AIADMK leaders are present outside the hospital.
Rao reached the Apollo hospital at 12:00 am local time and left within minutes.He is expected to brief the media soon.
There is still no official word on Jayalalithaa's condition, except for tweets from the hospital's management.