Bollywood's multi-faceted talent Neeraj Vora, known for writing "Rangeela" and for directing "Phir Hera Pheri", died here early on Thursday, months after being comatose, his family member said.
Neeraj's younger brother Uttank Vora told IANS that Neeraj died at 4 a.m. at a Andheri hospital. He was 54.
"He will be taken to Firoz Nadiadwala's house Barkat from where he will be taken to the Santa Cruz Electric Crematorium at 3 p.m.," Uttank said.
According to reports earlier in 2017, a room in filmmaker Firoz Nadiadwala's home was converted into a fully functional ICU for Neeraj.
Born in a Gujarati family, Neeraj came to be known in the film industry for the way he tackled humour through his acting, writing and directorial projects.
As a writer, he worked on films like "Rangeela", "Akele Hum Akele Tum", "Josh", "Badshah", "Chori Chori Chupke Chupke", "Awara Paagal Deewana", "Deewane Huye Paagal", "Ajnabee" and "Hera Pheri" and "Phir Hera Pheri".
His directorial projects include "Khiladi 420" and "Phir Hera Pheri". He was to direct "Hera Pheri III", but uncertainty loomed large over the project after he suffered a stroke in October 2016.
Producer Firoz Nadiadwala, who had been looking after the ailing Neeraj Vora for over a year, on Thursday mourned the demise of his "brother and friend".
Nadiadwala said: "He passed away at 4am. on Thursday. I've lost the battle to save my brother and friend from the clutches of death. His health had improved so much. But it deteriorated suddenly on Friday.
"He had to be shifted to hospital. But it was no use. We lost him."
For the past one year, Nadiadwala had been looking after all the medical expenses of Vora, who was comatose.
Vora occupied a special room in Nadiadwala's bungalow where the ailing writer-director was attended to by a fleet of medical experts, nurses, dieticians and well-wishers.
Reluctant to talk about his contribution, Nadiadwala said: "It was one year on October 19 since I got Neeraj to my home in Mumbai from AIIMS in Delhi where the doctors had declared he would be dead in a few hours.
"Quite frankly, I don't know what powers made me do what I did. I couldn't leave him to die. He had nobody to look after him. Neeraj did have a brother. But he was financially incapable of shouldering the responsibility.
"I had known Neeraj for 12 years. We have worked together in several films and we have shared a close bonding. How could I leave him there to die? How would I have lived with myself if I had been so callous?"