Ex-Speaker Somnath Chatterjee 'stable but critical' after heart attack

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Kolkata : Former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee, who was hospitalised in a critical condition last week, suffered a heart attack on Sunday morning, a hospital official said.

"Chatterjee suffered a heart attack at the hospital this morning. His condition is now stable but critical. He is undergoing dialysis," said Pradip Tondon, CEO of Bellevue Clinic.

The veteran Left leader has been put on ventilator support at the city nursing home since last Tuesday following a kidney-related ailment.

The 89-year-old was earlier admitted to the nursing home on June 25 after suffering a haemorrhagic stroke.

He underwent treatment for 40 days and was discharged just for three days after his health showed signs of improvement. However, he was re-admitted after his condition deteriorated last Tuesday, the officer said.

Chatterjee, regarded as an outstanding parliamentarian, served as the Lok Sabha Speaker from 2004 to 2009.

The 10-time Lok Sabha member was expelled from the Communist Party of India-Marxist on July 23, 2008, "for seriously compromising the position of the party" as he refused to resign as the Speaker after the CPI-M withdrew support to the first United Progressive Alliance government over the India-US civil nuclear deal.