Two held over ‘ru­mours’ about politi­cian’s health

The Myanmar Times - - World -

PO­LICE ar­rested two peo­ple on charges of “in­cit­ing vi­o­lence and spread­ing ru­mours”, an of­fi­cer said, amid un­cer­tainty about the health of a pow­er­ful and con­tro­ver­sial south In­dian politi­cian.

The two have been ac­cused of post­ing false news on so­cial me­dia web­sites about the con­di­tion of Ja­yaram Jay­alalitha, chief min­is­ter of Tamil Nadu state, who has been in hos­pi­tal since last month.

“The ac­cused were ar­rested on Oc­to­ber 10 for post­ing false news on Face­book. We are tak­ing th­ese acts se­ri­ously,” Senthil Ku­mar, head of the se­ri­ous crimes branch in the state cap­i­tal Chennai, said.

Forty-three sim­i­lar cases have been filed against un­known per­sons and a hunt launched to ar­rest them, Mr Ku­mar said.

Ms Jay­alalitha was ad­mit­ted to hos­pi­tal in Chennai on Septem­ber 22, and tens of thou­sands of her sup­port­ers are anx­iously await­ing news about her health.

Au­thor­i­ties have pro­vided few up­dates on her con­di­tion, ini­tially say­ing the 68-year-old leader was suf­fer­ing from fever and de­hy­dra­tion. On Oc­to­ber 3 the hos­pi­tal said she was on re­s­pi­ra­tory sup­port and a crit­i­cal care ex­pert was flown in from Bri­tain.

Ms Jay­alalitha, a for­mer movie star, has a cult fol­low­ing in one of the coun­try’s most pros­per­ous states. She is serv­ing as chief min­is­ter for the third time after win­ning elec­tions this year. –

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