New Delhi: Noted comedian Raju Srivastava was cremated on Thursday in New Delhi’s Nigambod forest in the presence of family and close friends.
Raju died on September 21 after fighting for his life for the last one and a half months. The 58-year-old comedian was admitted to AIIMS on August 10 after suffering a heart attack while exercising.
Raju’s friends and fellow comedians Sunil Paul and Ashaan Qureshi were also present to pay their last respects to the late comedian.
Srivastava’s body was handed over to his family on Wednesday and taken to his residence in Dwarka.
An ambulance festooned with white flowers left for the crematorium at Nikamboth Ghat at Kashmir Gate around 9 am, which was attended by veteran poet-comedian Surendra Sharma and Ashok Chakraborty.
Srivastava’s son Ayushmann performed the last rites as per Hindu rituals around 11 am, the comedian’s younger brother Deepu told PTI.
“We left home in Dwarka around 9 am for the funeral. Our family members from Kanpur and Lucknow are here,” he added.
“It was heartwarming to see so many of Raju Bhai’s fans and colleagues come here to pay their respects,” Dibu said. He added that the family is yet to decide on the venue for the prayer meeting.
Raju came to Mumbai in the 1980s to join the entertainment industry, but he shot to fame in 2005 with the first-of-its-kind comedy talent show ‘The Great Indian Laughter Challenge’.
His stage characters Kajodar and Manodhar in ‘The Great Indian Laughter Challenge’ were loved by all.
Raju appeared in many Hindi films like ‘Maine Pyaar Kiya’, ‘Baasikar’, ‘Bombay to Goa’ (remake) and ‘Amdhani Athani Karcha Rupaya’. He was one of the contestants in ‘Bigg Boss’ season three. He was the Chairman of Uttar Pradesh Film Development Council.
(With inputs from PTI)