TN Minister Doraikkannu dies

Our Bureau/PTI Chennai | Updated on November 01, 2020 Published on November 01, 2020

A file photo of R. Doraikkannu, Tamil Nadu Minister for Agriculture   -  Bijoy Ghosh

Tamil Nadu minister for agriculture R Doraikannu died on Saturday night due to Covid-19. He was 72.

He died at 11.15 pm, says a bulletin by Kauvery Hospital.

Doraikkannu was undergoing treatment at the hospital, after being shifted from a government medical college hospital in Villupuram on October 13. He was being treated for severe Covid-19 pneumonia and its complications and has been critical in the last few days.

Maintaining the functions of the vital organs continues to be a challenge considering his co-morbidities. He is on maximal life support and his response to treatment over the next 24 hours will determine the prognosis, said an earlier release from the hospital.

A strong loyalist of the AIADMK, Doraikkannu was a member of the 15th Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly from the Papanasam constituency. He won his seats from Papanasam in 2006, 2011 and 2016 elections.

TN Guv, CM condole death

PTI adds: Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit, Chief Minister K Palaniswami, his deputy O Panneerselvam and DMK president M K Stalin among others condoled Doraikkannu’s demise.

Doraikannu was known for his “simplicity, humbleness, straightforwardness, governance skills and commitment towards the welfare of the farming community... He handled the Ministry of Agriculture with full dedication and engraved his strong mark,” Purohit said in a message.

Palaniswami, who described the late leader as an “elder brother,” said Doraikkannu had joined the AIADMK when it was founded by the late CM M G Ramachandran in 1972, adding he had served the party with dedication since then. Doraikkannu had efficiently handled his Agriculture portfolio, he said, describing him as an affable person.

In a statement, the chief minister said the senior leader’s death was a “great loss” to the party and the state and extended his sympathies to the bereaved family.

Palaniswami visited the hospital on Sunday and paid floral tributes to a portrait of Doraikkannu there.

In a separate party statement, Panneerselvam and Palaniswami, AIADMK Coordinator and Co-Coordinator respectively, recalled the late minister’s decades-long association with the party and hailed him for his “effective public service.”

Stalin, the Leader of the Opposition in the State assembly, expressed shock over the minister’s demise. In a statement, he urged those in public life to exercise caution during their work in view of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Telangana Governor Tamiliasai Soundarajan and leaders of various political parties including Vaiko (MDMK), G K Vasan (TMC), S Ramadoss (PMK), L Murugan (BJP) and those of CPI and CPI-M also expressed their condolences.

Doraikkannu had complained of uneassiness on October 13 while travelling to Salem and was rushed to the government medical college hospital in Villupuram. The same day, he was shifted to the Kauvery Hospital, where he tested positive for Covid-19.

The hospital had said on Monday the Minister was being treated for severe Covid pneumonia and its complications and put on ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation), a heart- lung assistance machine, and ventilator.

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Published on November 01, 2020
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