One of India’s finest comedians and film actor Jaspal Bhatti died in a road accident earlier today near the city of Jalandhar, Punjab.
The 57-year-old’s vehicle hit a trawler in the early hours, with Bhatti’s son Jasraj and actress Surilie Gautam also reportedly injured in the road mishap.
The news was confirmed by Bhatti’s associate Vinod Sharma in a statement to Indian news agency, PTI.
Bhatti was en route to Jalandhar from Bhatinda for the promotion of his Punjabi film ‘Power Cut’, which is scheduled to release across India tomorrow.
Jasraj was reportedly driving the car.
The cremation is expected to take place later today after his body is brought to Chandigarh after completion of various legal formalities, including post-mortem.
Bhatti is survived by his wife Savita, son Jasraj and a daughter.
It is unclear whether the release of the film, ‘Power Cut’, will go ahead as planned in lieu of the tragic turn of events.
Produced by Pawaljit Singh Rupal of P&R Films in association with Mad Arts and directed by Bhatti himself, is a satire on the dismal power situation in the state and the working of the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL).
Bhatti shot to fame in the late ’80s and early ’90s, with the boom of satellite television with ‘Flop Show’ and ‘Ulta Pulta’.
Bollywood came calling soon after and the late actor has tickled many a funny bone in films such as “Fanaa” with Aamir Khan and Kajol, last year’s Shahid Kapur-starrer “Mausam”, Amitabh Bachchan’s “Ek – The Power of One” and several others.