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Tamil Nadu Minister Doraikkannu Succumbs to Covid-19 at 72; VP Naidu, PM Modi Express Grief

File photo of Doraikannu

File photo of Doraikannu

Doraikkannu was undergoing treatment in Chennai, after being shifted from a government medical college hospital in Villpuram on October 13, where he was admitted to after he complained of uneasiness.

Battling Covid-19, Tamil Nadu Agriculture Minister R Doraikannu passed away in a private hospital on Sunday. The 72-year-old Minister breathed his last late on Saturday night, Kauvery Hospital Executive Director Dr Aravdindan Selvaraj said in a medical bulletin.

"With deep grief, we announce the sad demise of Honourable Minister for Agriculture R Doraikkannu," on Saturday at 11.15 pm. Our thoughts and prayers are with the grieving family during this difficult period," he said.

Doraikkannu was undergoing treatment in Chennai, after being shifted from a government medical college hospital in Villpuram on October 13, where he was admitted to after he complained of uneasiness. Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit condoled the death of Doraikkannu and said he was saddened to know about the demise of the Minister.

Doraikkannu "was known for his simplicity, humbleness, straightforwardness, governance skills and commitment towards the welfare of farming community…" "He handled Ministry of Agriculture with full dedication and engraved his strong mark. His untimely demise is an irreparable loss to the people of Tamil Nadu and particularly to the AIADMK party," he said in his condolence message. Purohit conveyed his deep condolences to the bereaved members of the family and said he prayed to the Almighty God to rest his soul in peace.

Doraikkannu was elected to the Tamil Nadu Assembly from Papanasam in Thanjavur district in 2006, 2011 and 2016, with the late chief minister J Jayalalithaa inducting him in the cabinet in 2016. The Minister's health had suffered a significant deterioration in vital functions on Sunday last.

The hospital had said on Monday that the Minister was being treated for severe COVID pneumonia and its complications. A CT scan had showed 90 per cent lung involvement vis- a-vis the infection and he was put on ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) and ventilator.

On October 13, the minister experienced unease when he was on his way to attend the funeral of Davusayammal, Chief Minister K Palaniswami's mother, who had died at the age of 93 at Salem. Doraikkannu, who was travelling in his car, was rushed to the government medical college hospital in Villupuram and from there was shifted to Kauvery hospital the same day.

Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled the demise of Doraikkannu and hailed his contribution for the welfare of society.

"Deeply anguished by the passing away of Tamil Nadu Agriculture Minister, Sri Doraikannu," Naidu tweeted. "He worked with dedication for the uplift of the downtrodden & welfare of farmers. My condolences to his bereaved family members. Om Shanti!"

Modi also expressed sadness at the 72-year-old minister's demise. "Saddened by the demise of Minister in the Tamil Nadu Government, Thiru R. Doraikkannu. He made noteworthy efforts to serve society and empower the farmers. Condolences to his family and supporters in this sad hour," the Prime Minister's Office quoted Modi as saying.


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