Guwahati: Actor Puneeth Rajkumar died in a Bengaluru hospital today after suffering a heart attack, leaving fans and colleagues shocked and grief-stricken. He was 46.
He had been taken to Vikram Hospital this morning in an “unresponsive” condition; in the afternoon, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai tweeted: “I am deeply shocked that Kannada celebrity Shri Puneeth Rajkumar died of a heart attack. The death of Kannadigar’s favourite 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.”
ಕನ್ನಡದ ಖ್ಯಾತನಟ ಶ್ರೀ ಪುನೀತ್ ರಾಜ್ ಕುಮಾರ್ ಅವರು ಹೃದಯಾಘಾತದಿಂದ ನಿಧನರಾಗಿದ್ದು ನಾನು ತೀವ್ರ ಆಘಾತಕ್ಕೆ ಒಳಗಾಗಿದ್ದೇನೆ. ಕನ್ನಡಿಗರ ಮೆಚ್ಚಿನ ನಟ ಅಪ್ಪು ನಿಧನದಿಂದ ಕನ್ನಡ ಹಾಗೂ ಕರ್ನಾಟಕಕ್ಕೆ ಅಪಾರ ನಷ್ಟ ವಾಗಿದ್ದು, ದೇವರು ಅವರ ಆತ್ಮಕ್ಕೆ ಶಾಂತಿ ಕರುಣಿಸಿ, ಅಭಿಮಾನಿಗಳಿಗೆ ಈ ನೋವನ್ನು ಸಹಿಸುವ ಶಕ್ತಿ ನೀಡಲಿಯೆಂದು ಪ್ರಾರ್ಥಿಸುತ್ತೇನೆ. pic.twitter.com/OF0aLhrqPm
— Basavaraj S Bommai (@BSBommai) October 29, 2021
Puneeth Rajkumar, 46, was the son of veteran actor Rajkumar. He was known to fans as “Appu” – after the 2002 film in which he played his first lead role – and “Power Star.” Puneeth’s older brother Shiva Rajkumar is also a hugely popular actor.
Born Lohit, Puneeth began as a child star – he was just six-months-old when he was cast in 1976 films Premada Kanike and Aarathi. In addition to Appu, which was a hit, his film credits – of which he had 29 – as a lead actor include Mourya, Arasu, Raam and Anjani Putra. He was also a singer and was admired for his dance skills. Puneeth made his TV debut in 2012 as presenter of Kannadada Kotyadhipathi, the Kannada version of game show Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?
Puneeth Rajkumar is survived by wife Ashwini Revanth and has two children.