Tuesday, May 27, 2003, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Tohra in critical condition
Tribune News Service

Patiala, May 26
The Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal President and former SGPC chief, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra, was today admitted to a local hospital in a critical condition after he suffered a massive heart attack.

Mr Tohra was at one of his supporter's residence in the city, along with his son-in-law, Mr Harmail Singh Tohra, when he complained of acute breathlessness and asked to be taken to a hospital. He was brought to the Patiala Heart Institute by Mr Harmail Singh and his daughter at 7.40 p.m.

The Institute Managing Director and cardiac expert, Dr Gurpreet Singh Sidhu, said the former SGPC chief was in an unconscious state when he was brought at the institute. He said Mr Tohra had apparently suffered an acute heart attack. He said his condition demanded immediate cardiac and respiratory resuscitation and he had been put on ventilatory support.

Mr Tohra's condition continued to be critical till late in the evening and he was stated to be on the life-support system. Dr Sidhu said that Akali leader's treatment was being monitored by a team of experts at the institute. He said besides other problems, Mr Tohra’s oxygen saturation level at one point had fallen to 35 against a normal of 95. His wife, daughter and son-in-law are by his side at the institute's ICU. News of Mr Tohra’s sudden illness took Akali workers and leaders by surprise. Mr Harmail Singh Tohra was heard referring to today’s developments in the Akali circles as having resulted in causing stress to the Akali leader.

His family members said he had not been keeping well for the past two to three days, but had apparently overlooked his health because of Akali unity parleys. As the news spread, Akali activists started gathering outside the hospital.


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