Wajid Khan, one of the top composers of Bollywood dance songs, has died at the age of 42 after contracting coronavirus, media reports said Monday.
Khan, who had been suffering from a kidney ailment, passed away in Mumbai on Sunday after suffering cardiac arrest, his brother told Press Trust of India news agency, adding that he had tested positive for the virus.
The first death in Bollywood to be attributed to the pandemic sent shockwaves through the industry, which is still reeling from the loss of two luminaries, Irrfan Khan and Rishi Kapoor, in April.
Khan was part of the musical duo Sajid-Wajid who got their Bollywood break in 1998 when they composed the songs for superstar Salman Khan’s hit film “Pyaar Kiya To Darna Kya” (“Why Fear Anything if You are in Love”).
They became his favoured composers, collaborating on films such as the 2007 comedy “Partner”, the 2009 action blockbuster “Wanted” and 2010’s top grosser “Dabangg” (“Fearless”).
The superstar was among a string of Bollywood names who paid tribute to the composer, tweeting that he would “always love, respect, remember n miss u as a person n ur talent”.
Bollywood legend Amitabh Bachchan said he was “shocked at the passing of Wajid Khan” and hailed his “bright smiling talent”.
Top actress Priyanka Chopra Jonas tweeted: “The one thing I will always remember is Wajid bhai’s laugh. Always smiling. Gone too soon.”
Sajid-Wajid’s foot-tapping numbers like “Munni badnaam hui” (“Munni lost her reputation”) and “Do you wanna partner” became a staple of Indian wedding parties. The duo also appeared on TV talent shows, where they mentored aspiring performers.