From Nov 18 to Dec 28: Revisiting the final days of Captain Vijayakanth!

Well-renowned actor and politician Vijayakanth is no more and the people across and beyond Tamil Nadu are devastated by his demise. As a towering human, Vijayakanth has won millions of hearts throughout his journey that whenever he faces a downfall, there is section of people who broke into tears and prayed for his comeback. It happened during cinematic and political failures and indeed during his health setbacks. 

Through his caring, kind-hearted gesture and generosity, Vijayakanth has reaped lots of love and affection from people of all walks of life. On the other hand, Vijayakanth was known for his hard working, audacious trait and transparency that earned him long-lasting reputation. He had successfully marched in cinema and politics and nurtured a commitment of serving the people. 

From aiding the grassroots artists in cinema, standing with them during their difficult times, recognizing their efforts and acting, pouring prospects to young faces in big screens to voicing the pain of film fraternities and the general public, the people have more reasons to say why they deeply love and respect Vijayakanth. It was that affection that made him the household name and made the people to endure a personal sorrow whenever he encounters a health setback. 

Vijayakanth has been battling health ailments for nearly a decade and he has become dormant both in cinema and politics owing to his health condition, but has never lost his connection with people. Whenever he made public appearances and was taken to the hospital, scores of fans and followers broke down in tears and prayed for his swift recovery. When he was down with severe illness last month, the people hoped that he would have a road to recovery but their hope and prayers later became vain as he has breathed his last on Thursday - December 28 at the age of 71. 

Let's revisit the final days of Vijayakanth, whom the fans fondly called 'Captain',

  • November 18 - Vijayakanth's party DMDK has announced that the actor-turned-politician was taken to MIOT Hospital in Chennai. By citing that he was taken to the hospital for a general medical investigation, the party asserted that he would return home in some days and asked the people not to believe in rumours. 
  • However, Vijayakanth had a prolonged hospitalization that sparked hearsays about his health condition. 
  • Nevertheless, two days later, on November 20 - the party has issued another statement reiterating that Vijayakanth was admitted to the hospital for general medical investigation. Dispelling the rumours that he was put under the ventilator support, the party asked not to incite or spread rumours. 
  • On November 29, MIOT hospitals issued a first statement about Vijayakanth's health condition and to everyone's shock, the hospital said that his health is not stable. The hospital said, "Vijayakanth's health had been improving. However, in the last 24 hours, his health is not stable and he needs pulmonary treatment. We hope he recovers soon. He needs another 14-day hospitalization."
  • When the fans and followers hoped that Vijayakanth would return home in some days, the statement from the hospital startled them and they kept praying for his lasting recovery. 
  • Later on November 29, Vijayakanth's wife Premalatha spoke for the first time after the hospital issued its statement about his health condition. Releasing a video on social media, Premalatha said that along with her, the doctors and party leaders are taking good care of him and that he will get recovered completely. 
  • She further said, "There is no reason to panic or to be afraid. The hospital has made a routine announcement. The doctors, the party leaders, and I are taking care of him. He will recover completely and come back home and meet each of you." She further said, "Your prayers and all the help he has done will definitely save him. I request all the cadres and party leaders who have come together not to be afraid. We will update you on when he will be back home. Before that, please don't spread any rumours." 
  • On December 2, in the wake of rumours about his health condition, the DMDK officially released the photos of Vijayakanth in the hospital. He was seen with his wife Premalatha and his younger son Shanmugapandian. 
  • Veteran actor Nassar and directors RK Selvamani and Lingusamy visited Vijayakanth at the hospital and said that he was doing well. Nassar said, "We visited Captain Vijayakanth at the hospital and found him in good health. The doctor assured us that he is healthy and recovering well. Some of the news reports are false and misleading. He said that his physical condition is the same as it was two months ago. Vijayakanth will recover soon. He expressed hope that he will talk to us.”
  • On December 11, the party poured a respite to the fans and cadres by officially announcing that Vijayakanth has got discharged from the hospital and returned home with good health. 
  • The party's leadership led by Premalatha has also thanked the film fraternities, party functionaries, cadres, and supporters for their prayers for Vijayakanth's good health and recovery. 
  • Three days later, on December 14, Vijayakanth has made a first public appearance after his hospitalization as he participated in the party's general and executive council meeting. Though his appearance relished the fans and cadres, it also saddened them as they never wished to see his stumbling stature. Vijayakanth neither spoke in this meeting nor shown signs that he has completely recovered. 
  • In his presence, his wife Premalatha replaced Vijayakanth as the general secretary of the DMDK and her elevation hinted that Vijayakanth would confined to his medical treatment and would not make public appearances. 
  • On December 26, a fortnight after getting discharged, the party announced that Vijayakanth was again taken to the MIOT Hospital for general medical investigation. The party said that he was doing fine and would return home on December 28. 
  • Little did the family and the people know that Vijayakanth's mortal remains would be taken home on December 28. On Thursday, the hospital announced that Vijayakanth was tested positive for COVID-19 and his health has deteriorated further. The announcement has deeply shocked the fans and followers who started gathering before his residence, the party office, and before the hospital. 
  • At around 9.00 am on Thursday, the hospital officially announced the demise of Captain Vijayakanth, who died at the age of 71. The hospital said, "Vijayakanth was hospitalized for pneumonia and was getting treated with the ventilator support. In spite of best efforts taken by the medical staff, he passed away during the morning hours of December 28."
  • His body was taken from the hospital to his residence in Saligramam, Chennai and later, it was taken to the party headquarters in Koyambedu, where the public and celebrities are paying their last respects. 
  • In the midst of the melancholy brought by Vijayakanth's demise, the party has issued an official statement announcing that Vijayakanth has breathed his last at 6.10 am on Thursday. By citing that his loss is a huge disaster for the Tamil Nadu people and film industry, the party said that the last rites will be held at 4.45 pm on Friday. Honouring his unparallelled contributions to the public life, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin said that Vijayakanth's last rites will be accorded with state funeral.