Former finance minister Arun Jaitley continued to be life support system on Sunday even as a bevvy of politicians, including Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Union ministers Smriti Irani and Ram Vilas Paswan, visited AIIMS to enquire about his health condition. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh also visited Jaitley later tonight.
Jaitley, 66, was admitted to AIIMS August 9 after he complained of breathlessness and restlessness. The All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has not issued any bulletin on Jaitley’s health condition since August 10. A multidisciplinary team of doctors at AIIMS is monitoring his condition. Health Minister Harsh Vardhan had said on Friday, “Doctors at AIIMS are doing the best they can.”
Visited Sh Arun Jaitley ji. I pray to God for his good health and fast recovery.
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) August 18, 2019
Among those who visited the cardio-neuro centre at AIIMS on Sunday were Himachal Pradesh Governor Kalraj Mishra, RSS Joint General Secretary Dr Krishna Gopal and former Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh. “Visited Sh Arun Jaitley ji. I pray to God for his good health and fast recovery,” the Delhi CM later tweeted.
On Saturday, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Harsh Vardhan and Railways Minister Piyush Goyal visited AIIMS to enquire about Jaitley’s health. Among others who visited the hospital are J&K Governor Satyapal Malik, BSP chief Mayawati, BJP leader Satish Upadhyay, Congress leaders Abhishek Singhvi and Jyotiraditya Scindia, and Air Force chief Air Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa.
On Saturday evening, a major fire broke out on the second floor of the teaching block at AIIMS. While no casualties were reported, the Delhi Fire Services (DFS) dispatched at least 42 fire tenders and 200 firefighters to douse the flames.
Earlier this year in May, Jaitley was admitted to AIIMS for treatment. Prior to that, he had undergone a renal transplant on May 14, 2018, when he was Union finance minister. Piyush Goyal had stepped in to take charge of the Finance Ministry at the time. In September 2014, he had undergone bariatric surgery because of a long-standing diabetic condition.
Jaitley, a lawyer by profession, had been an important part of Modi’s Cabinet in the BJP government’s first term. He held the finance and defence portfolios, and often acted as the chief troubleshooter of the government.
Jaitley, however, did not contest the 2019 Lok Sabha elections citing his ill-health. After the Modi government returned to power, Jaitley wrote to the Prime Minister saying he would like to stay away from “any responsibility” on account of his ill health.