Puneeth Rajkumar, one of the most beloved actors of Sandalwood industry, passed away on October 29 after he had earlier been hospitalised in Bengaluru.
The actor's demise sent shockwaves not just in the Sandalwood industry but across the country. Puneeth, 46, suffered a heart attack and was receiving treatment in the Intensive Care Unit in Vikram hospital in Bengaluru.
He was fondly called Appu by his fans and is the youngest son of legendary actor Rajkumar and Parvathamma. He was their fifth and youngest child.
Puneeth Rajkumar was last seen in the movie Yuvarathnaa.
Dubbed by media and the fans as the 'powerstar', Puneeth has a huge fan following and has boxed several super hit movies.
After hearing about the tragic news, several big shot politicians including Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai rushed to the hospital. According to media reports, the road leading to the hospital has now been barricaded.
"I am deeply shocked that Kannada celebrity Shri Puneet Raj Kumar died of a heart attack. The death of Kannadigar's favorite actor, Appu, has caused enormous loss to Kannada and Karnataka, and I pray that God will have mercy on his soul and give his fans the power to endure this pain," Bommai said on Twitter.
Puneeth started his career as a child actor in his father’s movie Premada Kanike in 1976. He went on to win the National Film Award for Best Child Artist for his performance in Bettada Hoovu in 1985 along with Karnataka State Award for Best Child Artist for Chalisuva Modagalu and Yeradu Nakshatragalu at the age of 10.
His other films include Ajay, Arasu, Raam, Hudugaru and Veera Kannadiga. He was also among the highest paid actors in the Sandalwood industry.
"Shocking ,devastating & heartbreaking! #PuneethRajkumar gone too soon. Broken heart. Rest in Peace! My deepest sympathies and tearful condolences to the family. A huge loss to the Kannada / Indian film fraternity as a whole. Strength to all to cope with this tragic loss!" Actor and former politician Chiranjeevi tweeted.
Besides being an actor, Puneeth was also a successful singer like his father. He also worked as a TV presenter.Former Indian cricketer Virender Sehwag also mourned the loss and said: "Saddened to hear about the passing away of #PuneethRajkumar . Warm, and humble, his passing away is a great blow to Indian cinema. May his soul attain sadgati. Om Shanti."