The Tamil Nadu Cabinet has tabled the findings of the Justice Armumughaswamy Commission tasked with investigating the death of former state chief minister J Jayalalithaa.
The report has accused Apollo Hospitals chairman Dr Pratap C Reddy for “issuing press releases with false statements that the CM can be discharged anytime”, in addition to accusing the chairman of not disclosing facts surrounding the late chief minister’s health.
“Apollo Hospitals Chairperson Dr Pratap C Reddy conducted briefings without disclosing real facts surrounding the late chief minister’s ailments and treatment,” the report added.
More significantly, however, the commission’s report has singled out Jayalalithaa’s personal aide VK Sasikala, personal doctor KS Sivakumar, former state health secretary J Radhakrishnan and former state health minister Dr C Vijayabaskar for being “at fault” in their role surrounding the death of the former chief minister.
The Commission found “criminality” against former state chief secretary, Rama Mohan Rao for signing 21 documents that approved treatment procedures to be conducted on the ailing chief minister back in 2016.
The report has recommended that further investigations be conducted on the role of the bureaucrats, politicians and Dr KS Sivakumar, by way of its findings.
Despite its findings against Dr Reddy, the Arumughaswamy Commission however found no specific fault with Apollo Hospitals, where Jayalalithaa was admitted for several weeks in 2016, in the period leading up to her eventual demise. “There is no evidence or documents put forth aside of those stating the Apollo Hospital gave the best treatment," its report said.
An AIIMS Medical Committee tasked with assisting the Arumughaswamy Commission has concurred with its findings, in addition to issuing a clean chit to Apollo Hospitals in its treatment of the former chief minister.
The Arumughaswamy Commission was constituted by the then-AIADMK Government in 2017, at the insistence of former chief minister O Paneerselvam, to probe the death of Jayalalithaa. However, it was in 2021 that the newly-elected DMK Government promised a speedy end to the probe by way of an election promise to get to the bottom of the late chief minister’s death.