Veteran film, television and stage actor Vikram Gokhale died on Saturday (November 26) due to multi-organ failure at a city-based hospital where he was undergoing treatment. Gokhale, 77, was admitted to the Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital in Pune two weeks ago.
“We are saddened to announce that noted actor Vikram Gokhale passed away today at the Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital due to multi-organ failure,” the hospital said in a statement. “He was admitted to the hospital 15 days ago following health complications and was undergoing treatment. Today he breathed his last between 1:45 pm and 2 pm,” said Rajesh Damle, a family friend.
On Thursday (November 24), the family had informed that the actor was not responding to treatment and was in critical condition. Rumours of his death had also spread on social media.
But on Friday, hospital officials said that Gokhale was showing slow but steady improvement. In a bulletin issued on Saturday morning, the hospital said that his health had again deteriorated.
Gokhale’s mortal remains will be kept at the Balgandharva Auditorium in the city and his last rites will be performed at the Vaikunth crematorium in the evening, said Damle.
The actor is survived by his wife and two daughters.
Gokhale, an artist equally at home, in theatre, television and films, acted in several Marathi and Bollywood films including the Amitabh Bachchan-starrer “Agneepath” (1990), “Bhool Bhulaiyaa” (2007), “Natsamrat” (2015) and “Mission Mangal” (2019).
His latest release was the Marathi film “Godavari”. Before his Bollywood debut, Gokhale cut his teeth on Marathi stage where he worked with acclaimed directors such as Vijaya Mehta. His father Chandrakant Gokhale was also a renowned film and theatre actor.
Notably, Vikram Gokhale’s grandmother Kamlabai Gokhale was one of the first women actors of the Indian film industry. Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde condoled his death.
“Deeply saddened to hear about the death of veteran actor Vikram Gokhale, who ruled the Marathi and Hindi theater as well as the film industry and the hearts of the audiences with his versatile acting. His passing away is an irreparable loss to the Indian theatre and film industry. Heartfelt tributes!” Shinde said in a tweet in Marathi.
Deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis said that Gokhale’s death had caused an irreparable loss to the world of cinema and theatre.
“Not only a versatile actor, director, and theatre artist, Gokhale as a person had a big heart and broad social consciousness. A classy actor, his knack of expressing emotions through body language and eyes and his confident streak were unmatched,” said Fadnavis in his tweet.
Gokhale also took the initiative to help the families of disabled servicemen and educate underprivileged children, he noted.
With his death, “a university of acting” has been lost, the deputy chief minister added.
“I pay my heartfelt tributes to Vikram Gokhale who did justice to every role and brought the character alive. May his family and his millions of fans have the strength to bear this grief, this is my prayer to God!” said Fadnavis.
(With inputs from agencies)