Nagpur: Actor-activist Vira Sathidar, best known for featuring in the National Award-winning film "Court", died on Tuesday due to COVID-19 related complications, filmmaker Chaitanya Tamhane confirmed.
The actor, who was in his early sixties, was admitted to a city hospital after he contracted the coronavirus.
According to Tamhane, who directed him in the acclaimed 2014 "Court", the actor was put on ventilator and breathed his last around 3 AM.
"It's true. He passed away at around 3 AM in the hospital. He had COVID-19 and was on ventilator. It's an extremely unfortunate news. It is yet to sink in," Tamhane told PTI.
Sathidar rose to prominence after playing the role of protest singer NaNarayan Kamble in "Court", who is accused of encouraging a manhole worker to commit suicide through one of his folk songs.
Tamhane said the news of Sathidar's demise has come as a "huge shock" to him.
"He was not only an actor, activist and a poet but also one of the nicest human beings I've met. I still can't process it. He was a fantastic person and I can now only think of the time we spent making 'Court,'" the director added.
Apart from "Court", which was India's official entry to Oscars 2016, Sathidar went on to feature in two more short films.