Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) MLA who was suffering from COVID-19 has succumbed to the illness in Chennai. Jayaraman Anbazhagan was a MLA from Chepauk-Thiruvallikeni constituency in Chennai district. He was previously elected to the Theagaraya Nagar Constituency in 2001 elections.
J Anbazhagan was a popular leader who was at the forefront of relief work during the coronavirus pandemic. Jayaraman Anbazhagan breathed his last at Rela Institute & Medical Centre in Chromepet, Chennai where he was undergoing treatment for COVID-19. J Anbazhagan died on a day he would have turned 62.
Tamil Nadu has so far recorded 34,914 coronavirus cases with 307 deaths. More than 18,000 people have recovered from COVID-19.
Condolences started pouring in after the news of J Anbazhagan's death on his 62nd birthday spread.
The 62-year old MLA, "who has been fighting for his life with severe COVID-19 pneumonia rapidly deteriorated early this morning. Inspite of full medical support, including mechanical ventilation at our COVID-19 facility, he succumbed to his illness," Dr Rela Institute and Medical Centre said in a
statement condoling his death.
Anbazhagan, who had co-morbidities including chronic kidney disease was put on ventilator support on June 3 -a day after his admission- as his respiratory distress worsened.
Subsequently, though he showed improvement with his oxygen requirement sliding to half, his health condition deteriorated significantly on Monday.
His oxygen requirement went up once again and his cardiac function and chronic kidney disease also deteriorated and he was declared critical.
Initially, on admission, he was managed with high flow oxygen therapy through facemask.
He had undergone liver transplant about 15 years ago and he was on medication for that.
Chief Minister K Palaniswami said Anbazhagan was a leading DMK functionary and conveyed his condolences to the bereaved family and party workers.
A three-time MLA, Anbazhagan, born on June 10, 1958 incidentally died on his 62nd birthday today and he is the son of late Pazhakadai Jayaraman, a veteran Dravidian movement and DMK leader here.
A bold and senior party functionary here, he was the Chennai West District Secretary and he has successfully organised a slew of party events and is close to party chief M K Stalin.
A backbencher in the Assembly, Anbazhagan is among DMK's noted articulate members in the House and he had often locked horns with ministers and ruling AIADMK MLAs over several issues.
A vocal critic of the AIADMK government, he tore a copy of Governor Barwarilal Purohit's address to the Assembly in January this year and put it on the table of Speaker P Dhanapal and he was briefly suspended.
He was elected to the Assembly from here in 2001 (T Nagar), 2011 and 2016 (Chepauk-Triplicane). DMK President M K Stalin condoled Anbazhagan's death and
paid rich tributes to him.
Expressing shock, Stalin said Anbazhagan slogged without respite to carry out the anti-COVID-19 people's welfare initiatives of the party.
Christened 'Ondrinaivom Vaa' which meant let us join to fight coronavirus, it is a DMK's relief initiative.
The MLA contracted the virus during his fully dedicated work for the people during the times of the pandemic, Stalin said.
Party flags will fly at half-mast for three days and party organised welfare events were being postponed, the DMK chief said.
Health Minister C Vijayabaskar who had days ago visited the hospital where the MLA was treated said on his twitter handle, "I am deeply saddened about the loss of Mr. #JAnbazhagan MLA this morning.
My heartfelt condolences to his family, people of his constituency and his party. May his soul rest in peace. #RIP #JAnbazhagan.
(Updated with PTI Inputs)