Puzzlement and shock about Sidharth Shukla's unexpected death, age 40
What happened? This can't be true - he was okay, in good health, right? The questions pile up and all of them land on a harsh and complicated reality: Sidharth Shukla has lost his life at age 40 in his native Mumbai.
The channel 'Colors TV', where the Indian actor, presenter and model worked, confirmed the news. It also denied the rumours about his cause of death, which suggested a heart attack. Until the autopsy is complete, it will not be uncertain what exactly happened to Sidharth Shukla.
“At Colors we are saddened and devastated by the sudden death of our family member, Sidharth Shukla. We will miss him a lot. His loss is irreparable for us and for the entire industry”, is the message that the Colors TV channel launched to confirm the news.
Through social networks, Colors TV has been collecting messages that colleagues and friends of the channel have directed at Sidharth Shukla.
The big question remains: what happened? How could a fit, athletic guy like Sidharth Shukla lose his life? After speaking with the Mumbai police, the Indian Express assured that the body did not show injuries or signs of violence. Still, in the moments after his transfer to the hospital, the cause of Shukla's death was yet to be determined.
In fact, the police opened an investigation into the actor's home, from which he was transferred to the Dr. RN Cooper Municipal Hospital in Mumbai (India). By the time he arrived at the hospital, CNN-News 18 reports, the actor was no longer alive.
It was ETimes India that first mentioned a heart attack as the cause of Sidharth Shukla's death. After consulting sources close to the family, the outlet reported that the actor had severe chest pain on the morning of Thursday, September 2.
Despite the suggestion of the heart attack, rumours and speculation have continued to accumulate in social media. In response, the actor's Public Relations team has rushed to release a statement asking for prudence and respect for the millions of fans of Sidharth Shukla .
"You all know the shocking news and we too are shocked," the PR team wrote. "Now, we have a request to make of you. We ask that you respect and support us in these difficult times. We ask the media to draw a line and give family and loved ones space to cry. We are all suffering and we are all equally shocked."
The statement continued to recall that "Sidharth Shukla was a reserved person, so respect his privacy and that of his family." It ended with another request: "pray that his soul may rest in peace." Undoubtedly, a very hard statement to write and launch, but necessary due to the impact of what happened.
Sidharth Shukla was a star in India, where he had specialized in roles as a romantic hunk in drama series. However, what really made him known to a larger audience was his work in reality TV. He became a presenter for 'India's Got Talent 7' in 2016.
Before being a television celebrity, Sidharth Shukla had become the 'Best Model of the World' in 2005. He'd been the first Indian model to achieve such an award. Three years later, he would make the leap to film and television.
Since 2012, Sidharth Shukla was linked to Colors TV. As his main spokesperson, the channel is now carrying the weight of informing the public. It combines the information about the actor's death with heartfelt tributes from all the colleagues and friends that he had made in the nine years he had been in the channel.
"I will meet you in heaven, brother," wrote actor and model Asim Riaz.
"God, this is heartbreaking!!" tweeted actress Kiara Advani. She also sent her support and condolences to the family.
For her part, the actress and singer Parineeti Chopra, said she was "unable to process" what happened. "Rest in peace, Sidharth Shukla," she wrote. "Truly, you were loved by millions."
Director and producer Ajay Devgn also wanted to send a message to Sidharth Shukla. "Life and death are disconcerting, but when someone as young as Sidharth Shukla passes away abruptly, one is very sad. Condolences to his family."