India

India probes 'dengue fever' death of Yash Chopra

  • 23 October 2012
  • From the section India
Yash Chopra
Image caption Yash Chopra, dubbed the King of Romance, gave Bollywood some of its biggest blockbusters

Authorities in the Indian city of Mumbai have announced a probe into whether top Bollywood filmmaker, Yash Chopra, died from dengue fever.

Chopra, 80, died on Sunday at Lilavati hospital and doctors blamed the death on the disease.

Top Bollywood stars and film-makers attended Yash Chopra's cremation on Monday.

Over five decades, Chopra, dubbed the King of Romance, gave Bollywood some of its biggest blockbusters.

Senior officials of the city municipal corporation are reviewing Chopra's death "to ascertain the exact cause", the Press Trust of India quoted an official as saying.

The civic authorities have also asked to see the records at the Lilavati hospital in suburban Bandra, where Chopra was admitted on 13 October after being diagnosed with dengue, the official said.

Health officials say October is the worst month for the spread of the dengue virus and recently India's Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said that every dengue death should be audited.

Chopra's film studios, Yash Raj Films, helped establish some of Indian cinema's biggest names, including Amitabh Bachchan and Shah Rukh Khan.

Both Bachchan and Khan attended the private funeral held at a crematorium in the city.

Chopra's body had earlier been kept for public viewing in a studio at the production house he set up in the 1970s.

Almost all the big names from the industry and hundreds of fans were allowed to pay their last respects.

Tributes have poured in from within and outside the film industry.

In his tribute, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh described Chopra as an "icon of Indian cinema" and said that he had entertained many generations "with his rare creativity".

Chopra started his film career working for his brother before establishing Yash Raj Films and going on to produce more than 40 movies - 22 of them as director.

He was behind major hits including Waqt (Time), Deewar (Wall), Dil to pagal hai (Heart is mad) and Chandni (Moonlight).

Dilwale dulhaniya le jayenge (The big hearted will take the bride), which Chopra produced and his son Aditya directed, is the longest-running movie in India and is still packing in the crowds in Mumbai cinema halls after more than 18 years.

On his birthday last month, he said Jab tak hai jaan (Till I am alive) - being released next month - would be his last film as a director.

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