Chhattisgarh Announces 3 Days of State Mourning after Death of Its First CM Ajit Jogi

Arunima

On the morning of May 9, Ajit Jogi, like any other day, was spending time in the garden area of his Raipur residence -- Sagaun Bangla. Wheelchair-bound since 2004 but mentally as agile as ever, mornings were reserved for Jogi's 'Janta Durbars'. But the lockdown had restricted people-to-people contact.

As per the medical bulletin of the Shree Narayana Hospital, Jogi bit into a tamarind fruit while he was in the garden and choked on its seed. He was found unconscious by family members. CPR by senior doctors at his residence did not yield results and the 74-year-old was rushed to the intensive care unit of the hospital. Medical examination revealed he had suffered a cardiac arrest.

The first chief minister of Chhattisgarh was put on ventilator support and for the next 20 days family members and supporters swung from hope to despair as very little improvement was seen in the health of Janta Congress Chhattisgarh's patron. Doctors reported swelling in the brain (cerebral edema) of Jogi and said it could have been caused by denial of blood supply to brain post the cardiac arrest.

His son Amit Jogi tweeted on May 21 that on the occasion of Ramzan, supporters of the former CM were praying harder for his recovery.

But the prayers went unanswered when on Friday afternoon around 1:30 pm Ajit Jogi suffered a second cardiac arrest. After two hours of struggle doctors declared him dead at 3:30 pm.

The family has said the mortal remains of the IAS turned politician will be taken to his Bilaspur residence, Marwahi Sadan, on Saturday and the last rites will be performed at his native village of Gaurela. Although the family has assured the administration that lockdown guidelines will be followed during the cremation, Jogi's popularity in his home ground and his relevance in Chhattisgarh politics might make that a challenging task.

Chhattisgarh has announced a three-day state mourning.