Minister tad better, family tight-lipped
By Daniel Thimmayya - CHENNAI
08th August 2012 07:41 AM
A day-long drama played out outside the Global Health City in Perumbakkam, where doctors are fighting to keep Union Minister for Science and Technology Vilasrao Deshmukh stable. However, right at the end, a reliable source confirmed that his condition had “reasonably stabilised” and was “better than yesterday”. Given the nature of his liver, kidney and lung ailments, it did not come as a surprise that he remained on life support (ventilator) and is still extremely critical.
Between several rumours of his having passed away and expectations of visits from Congress hotshots, nothing else happened. After he was airlifted by a special air ambulance on Monday and admitted to Global, his family and aides remained incarcerated inside the ICU, behind a plethora of armed guards. And that is where they remained till the day ended, choosing not to put to rest speculations over whether Deshmukh was alive or had succumbed to multi-organ failure.
His son, actor Riteish Deshmukh, left the hospital early and returned with his actor-wife Genelia D’Souza, and scurried back to the ward. By afternoon, it emerged that the hospital had budged enough to release a bulletin on Deshmukh’s condition, but even that was stopped. “The family has taken a call to not divulge any details about his current state to anyone. Please understand as it is a private affair,” explained a hospital representative.
Meanwhile, sources in the airport confirmed that Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan was scheduled to visit his predecessor, but cancelled at the last moment. “I was planning to fly to Chennai at 5 pm, but Amit Deshmukh, his eldest son, called me up and asked not to rush to the hospital. Nobody is allowed to meet Vilasrao and he is responding to treatment, I was told,” said Chavan.
Deshmukh’s colleagues from the Maharashtra Congress, Prateek Prakashbabu Patil, MoS for Coal, and Vilas Muttemwar, Lok Sabha MP from Nagpur, arrived at the hospital by 5.30 pm. Enraged by the media frenzy, Muttemwar lashed out, “Is this the occasion to do this? Please stay calm,” and proceeded to meet the Medical Superintendent. “His condition is too serious for them to be allowed inside the ward, but they were happy to hear the good news on the efforts doctors were taking to save his life,” said a source at the hospital.
While it is almost certain that Deshmukh will not be able to undergo a liver transplant until his vitals stabilise further, doctors have assured that there will be some “headway” by Wednesday.
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