Nihal Bitla, the face of progeria in India, passed away at a hospital in Telangana at the age of 15 after fighting with the disease from the age of one.
"Nihal, your contagious smile, positive attitude, inspiring chats, optimistic outlook will give us strength for years to come. You have left us behind with heavy hearts for a higher place, Rest in peace our dear friend. Our thoughts and condolences with family and friends," Team Nihal, the Facebook page that manages his progeria campaign, said in a statement.
Progeria is a condition that causes accelerated aging in children, leading them to early deaths. Even though it occurs only to one in four million people, it is presently incurable.
The Indian Express reported:
Nihal had become the face of progeria campaign in India after he, along with his family, took up the challenge of raising awareness about the disease and of finding more such cases for medical intervention in the country.
Nihal was at his grandparents house in Telangana to attend a wedding with his family. Reports suggest that he was rushed to the hospital after he complained of dehydration, where he was declared dead.
Huffington post reported:
Bitla's bucket list included a trip to Disneyland, seeing the Honda Asimo Robot, and meeting Aamir Khan. One of his wishes was fulfilled when the boy met Khan, whose film â€˜Taare Zameen Parâ€™, based on a child with learning difficulties, was a big inspiration in his life.