His long-time co-star and friend Deepti Naval said, "I don't have details yet, and I have not been able to speak to any of his family members, but a friend confirmed it to me. I also spoke to Shabana Azmi who was also aware of the sad, shocking and unbelievable news," Naval said.

"I just got a call from Shabana Azmi. She said he had a massive heart attack in Dubai. They will be getting his body to India. I am in Himachal right now. I am flying back to Mumbai," she said.

She said that his body will be brought to Mumbai for the last rites after completing the relevant formalities in Dubai.

Actor Satish Shah, who is in a state of shock after he heard about the death of Sheikh, said he has lost a great friend.

Satish Shah said: "I got a call from his wife. She said it was a massive heart atrack. He passed away last night. He was hale and hearty and he had taken his family to Dubai for holidays. All I can say is I have lost a great friend."

Shah said he was constantly in touch with Sheikh and the last they had spoken to each other was a couple of days ago.

"We were constantly in touch with each other through sms. I spoke to him day before yesterday. In fact, I am also close friends with his wife Rupa as we were all in the same college," Shah said.

He made a tremendous contribution in theatre, films and TV. He was the host of the famous talk show ‘Jeena Isi ka naam hai’ on television.

An active theatre person, Farooq Sheikh started his career in Bollywood in 1973 with ‘Garm Hawa’. His other notable films include Satyajit Ray’s ‘Shatranj Ke Khiladi’, ‘Chashme Buddoor’, ‘Kissi Se Na Kehna’ and ‘Noorie’.

Sheikh was best known for his contribution to parallel cinema in the 1970s and 1980s.

He was last seen playing the role of Ranbir Kapoor’s father in ‘Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani’.

After listening of the sudden demise of the veteran actor, celebs took to micro-blogging site twitter to express their grief.

“Woken up to the tragic news of yet another icon passing away .. R I P Farooq Sheikh Sir”, actress Neha Dhupia said in her tweet.

Arshad Warsi tweeted, “Really sad to hear about Farooq Sheikh, admired him as a person and as an actor... RIP Farooq Sahab”.


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