Pandit Birju Maharaj, a Kathak maestro, passed away on Monday. Many Bollywood actresses, including Madhuri Dixit, Alia Bhatt, and others, paid tribute to him on social media.
Madhuri Dixit pays tribute to late Pandit Birju Maharaj; Alia Bhatt calls him a ‘legend’
Pandit Birju Maharaj's former student Madhuri Dixit shared a throwback photo with him and wrote, “He was a legend but had a child like innocence. He was my guru but also my friend. He taught me the intricacies of dance and Abhinay but never failed to make me laugh at his funny anecdotes. He has left behind grieving fans and students but also left a legacy we will all carry forward. Thank you Maharajji for everything you taught me in dance along with humility, elegance and grace.”
She concluded her post by adding, “koti koti pranam (millions of salutes).”
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Alia Bhatt also shared his photo on her Instagram Stories, reminiscing about the day she met him in 2018 for Kalank. She penned, “Had the honour and privilege of spending three full days with Pandit Birju Maharaj in 2018 while I was prepping for 'Ghar More Pardesiya.' I will never forget all that he has taught me. It was possibly one of the most creative and fulfilling experiences that I have ever had. A legend who has inspired several and will always continue to do so through his art. Truly breaks my heart to write this post today. May his soul rest in peace."
Pandit Birju Maharaj had a kidney ailment and had been on dialysis for the past month due to high blood sugar levels. In a statement, his granddaughter Ragini Maharaj claimed he died of heart arrest. "He was with us when this happened. He had his dinner and we were playing antakshari because he loved old music. He was lying down… and suddenly his breathing became uneven. We think it was a cardiac arrest as he was also a heart patient. This happened between 12.15 and 12.30 am. It must have been just a minute or so. We rushed to the hospital but unfortunately, we could not save him. He died before reaching the hospital," Ragini said.
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