Sidharth Shukla: A rising star gone too soon

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Bollywood actor and model Sidharth Shukla. Photo: Twitter @sidharth_shukla

In a career spanning over 15 years, actor Sidharth Shukla won many hearts with his charming looks, acting prowess, and strong persona both on-screen and off-screen.

Unfortunately, the 40-year-old actor embarked on his final journey on Thursday, leaving everyone in a state of grief.

Born on December 12 1980 in Mumbai, Sidharth, who held a degree in interior designing, chose to switch gears to the modelling field, where he clinched the runner-up position in Gladrags Manhunt and Megamodel Contest in 2004.

The modelling stint was followed by his first appearance in a music video titled ‘Resham Ka Rumal’, which was sung by Ila Arun. In 2005, he made Indians proud by winning the World’s Best Model contest held in Turkey. After winning the title, he bagged a few advertisements for some leading brands.

Following his successful modelling days, the actor moved to leave a spark in the TV industry with his first acting role in ‘Babul Ka Aangann Chootey Na’ (2008). He later starred in shows such as ‘Jaane Pehchaane Se… Ye Ajnabbi’ and ‘Love U Zindagi’, which also featured Pavitra Punia. He also appeared in an episode of CID and a few episodes of ‘Aahat’.

However, it was his role as district collector Shivraj Shekhar in ‘Balika Vadhu’ that earned him widespread acclaim and popularity, including several awards and nominations.

His acting skills caught the attention of many leading film production houses and he finally landed a role in Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions’ movie ‘Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania’, which starred Alia Bhatt and Varun Dhawan in the lead roles.

Sidharth played the role of Angad Bedi, an NRI doctor and fiance of Alia’s character. The film earned him an award for Breakthrough Supporting Performance (Male) in the 2015 Stardust Awards.

Apart from showing off his acting talent in daily soaps, Sidharth unleashed his adventurous side by participating in the popular reality show ‘Khatron Ke Khiladi 7’, which he also won.

Viewers also got to see dancing skills in ‘Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 6’, however, he was eliminated in the 11th week of the show. He also had some hosting gigs under his belt. Sidharth hosted a few seasons of the famous reality show ‘India’s Got Talent’ alongside comedian Bharti Singh.

In 2017, he returned as a leading star in TV shows with Colors’ serial ‘Dil Se Dil Tak’, co-starring Rashami Desai and Jasmin Bhasin. The series was inspired by the Bollywood movie, ‘Chori Chori Chupke Chupke’. However, he left the show in between due to unknown reasons.

The best phase of his career started in 2020 with the hit reality show ‘Bigg Boss 13’ that amassed him a fan following like never before. His angry young man avatar, his clashes with co-contestants including Asim Riaz, Rashami Desai, and friendship with Shehnaaz Gill stole the limelight and made him win the show.

After featuring in ‘Bigg Boss 13’, his career got a new boom. He then treated fans with his appearance in three music videos back to back: Darshan Rawal’s ‘Bhula Dunga’ (March 2020), Neha Kakkar and Yasser Desai’s ‘Dil Ko Karaar Aaya’ (July 2020) and Tony Kakkar’s ‘Shona Shona’ (November 2020).

In the same year, Bigg Boss lovers got a chance to see him in the house again but as a ‘Toofani Senior’ alongside Hina Khan and Gauahar Khan. He was seen boosting the morale of the participants in the show.

Sidharth made his digital debut as Agastya Rao in the third season of the romance web series ‘Broken But Beautiful’ opposite Sonia Rathee. The actor’s last appearance on-screen was with Shehnaaz Gill on this year’s ‘Bigg Boss OTT’ and ‘Dance Deewane 3’.

Apart from his work, Sidharth was also in the spotlight for his personal life, especially, for his equation with Shehnaaz Gill. Reportedly, he had also been linked with many other actors including Rashami Desai, Arti Singh, and Pavitra Punia.

Sidharth is survived by his mother and two sisters, with whom the late star shared a special bond. The actor had time and again expressed his love for his doting mother on social media.

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