CHENNAI: One more public litigation has been filed, this time by a serving IRS officer, seeking a thorough probe into the mysterious death of former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa at the Apollo Hospitals in December last year. P Balamurugan (52), an Assistant Commissioner, Customs, Excise and Service Tax Tribunal, urged the court to constitute a panel, headed by IAS officer U Sagayam, to unearth the truth behind the death of Jaya.
The first bench of Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice M Sundar, before which the PIL came up for hearing on Monday, clubbed it along with similar PILs pending before the bench and posted it for July 4.
According to the petitioner, Governor Ch. Vidyasagar Rao visited Jayalalithaa at the hospital only 10 days after her admission, that too, after opposition parties raised the issue.
While Jayalaithaa was admitted on September 22, 2016 itself, Rao visited the hospital only on October 2 and returned without actually meeting her. He had handed over a fruit basket to someone else and returned, only to issue a press statement that she was recovering.
When a chief minister falls seriously ill, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, either through the PMO or the home minister or the Governor, should have ordered an inquiry about the CM’s health and called for a report from the Governor to assess her capability of running the administration and to oversee the change of power, if needed, as per Constitution.
But the PM had not called for any such report from the Governor nor made a courtesy phone call to the CM to inquire about her health.
When the Governor visited the hospital twice, nobody prevented him from seeing Jaya. “But, he deliberately did not see the ailing Chief Minister and in fact he had drawn a Laxman Rekha in the hospital so that nobody else would cross that line and see the Chief Minister,” the PIL said. At a later stage, the Governor reallocated the portfolios held by the CM and there is no documentary evidence to prove that she had advised him to do so, it said.
As for the hospital’s role, Balamurugan asked why the hospital did not allow anybody, including Jayalalithaa’s blood relative Deepa, to see her. When Jaya was cured of fever and dehydration and she started her normal functions on September 28, 2016, why she was not discharged, the asked.