"Rumours" about J Jayalalithaa's ill health have been gaining momentum with BJP leader Subramanian Swamy saying that the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister is scheduled to visit the US for a liver or kidney transplant soon. However, the ruling AIADMK rubbished the claim.
"JJ likely any moment to depart for Baltimore USA to be admitted in Johns Hopkins Hospital for a liver transplant. Tough operation," Swamy tweeted.
He further said the 67-year-old AIADMK supremo is also suffering from thyroid and kidney problems.
@SreeIyer1 : Thyroid and kidney problems too. Now you know why I did not oppose her bail application after Nariman pleaded health
— Subramanian Swamy (@Swamy39) July 14, 2015
The AIADMK denied the claims and said Jayalalithaa is not going to the US for treatment, NDTV reported.
The chief minister has not attended several events in the last few days and her absence at the secretariat on Monday, where she was supposed to give appointment orders to assistant professors, has raised many eyebrows.
According to an advertisement in party mouthpiece 'Dr Namathu MGR', Higher Education Minister P Palaniappan "welcomed" the AIADMK supremo for handing over appointment orders to 1,016 assistant professors of arts and science colleges.
Although, there was no mention of date, time or venue on the advertisement, the welcoming banners indicated that Jayalalithaa was scheduled to visit the secretariat on 13 July, according to a PTI report.
Karunanidhi asks Jayalalithaa to take rest
Taking advantage of the opportunity, DMK president M Karunanidhi had claimed last week that Jayalalithaa's illness had barred her from discharging her duties properly.
"The chief minister has no work because her health is not good enough to discharge her duties. That is why she is not attending any functions," The Telegraph quoted Karunanidhi as saying.
Karunanidhi has also asked Jayalalithaa and her government to clarify their stand on her health and clear speculations that are swelling by the day with her absence from political and public events in the state. He has even advised the AIADMK chief to take rest.
"You please take rest and take care of your health. A chief minister of state should be transparent," Tehelka quoted the DMK chief as saying.
The Tehelka report had earlier suggested that Jayalalithaa would be admitted to Methodist Speciality and Transplant Hospital in Texas for a liver transplant.
AIADMK sues Rediff.com for carrying stories on Jayalalithaa's health
With several reports claiming Jayalalithaa being "seriously ill", the Tamil Nadu chif minister has filed a defamation suit against online portal Rediff.com for carrying articles about her ill health on 10 July.
City public prosecutor ML Jegan filed the complaint on behalf of Jayalalithaa on 14 July. The complaint claims that the articles were published to tarnish her image and the facts in it were not verified, The Times of India reported.
The portal has since removed the articles, titled "Jayalalithaa Said To Be Seriously Ill" and "Chennai media knew Jaya's health was not fine but kept mum".
The defamation suit has been filed against author Ramasubramanian, chief executive officer, chief editor and associate editor of the website.
Rediff was one of the first to report about the AIADMK chief's health.