Veteran Punjabi film actor Mehar Mittal, who was best known for his comedy roles, died on Saturday, family sources said.

Mittal, who had been ailing for the past few months, died in a hospital at the Brahma Kumari complex at Mount Abu. The popular actor, who was virtually part of all Punjabi films at one time, died only two days before he was to turn 81.

Born on October 24, 1935, in a village in Bathinda district of south-west Punjab, Mittal took to the stage with small roles in Ram Lilas. He acted in plays before getting a break in movies. He acted in over 100 Punjabi films from 1974 till 1998.

Before becoming a full-time actor, Mittal had tried his hand at teaching and practising law.

Punjab Congress President Amarinder Singh condoled Mittal’s death, describing it as a major loss to the Punjabi entertainment industry.

“Mittal’s contribution to the Punjabi film industry was immense,” Amarinder said.

Mittal was awarded for his selfless, devoted and inspiring services as a cine artist in Punjabi films by the Dadasaheb Phalke Academy.

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