Saroj Khan
Saroj Khan Image Credit: IANS

As India woke up to the news of Bollywood choreographer Saroj Khan’s death on July 3 due to a cardiac arrest, social media has exploded with messages of condolences for the dance maestro.

Actress Madhuri Dixit Nene, who had the most successful collaboration with Saroj Khan, tweeted: “I am devastated by the loss of my friend and guru Saroj Khan. Will always be grateful for her work in helping me reach my full potential in dance. The world has lost an amazingly talented person.”

tab 200703 saroj khan3-1593751070002
Saroj Khan with Madhuri Dixit Nene Image Credit: PTI

Their close bond was the stuff of legends and their working union is one of the sturdiest in Bollywood.

Legendary actor Amitabh Bachchan put up a hazy picture of 'Don' and expressed his condolences succinctly with: prayers and folded hands.

Top Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar expressed his grief on Twitter and said: “Woke up to the sad news that legendary choreographer Sarojkhanji is no more. She made dance look easy, almost like anybody can dance, a huge loss for the industry. May her soul rest in peace,” tweeted Kumar. Actor Suniel Shetty described the dance maestro as an ‘irreplaceable’ talent.

Director and choreographer Farah Khan took to Twitter and described her as an ‘inspiration’.

“Rest In Peace Sarojji … You were an inspiration to many, myself included. Thank you for the songs,” tweeted Khan.

Superstar Shah Rukh Khan said she was his "first genuine teacher in the film industry."

Director Anubhav Sinha called her death a tragic loss.

“Kya masterji? What a loss … a legend, a star an era Saroj ji. This is such a ridiculous year,” said Sinha of ‘Thappad’ fame.

tab 200703 saroj khan11-1593751071753
Bollywood actress Madhuri Dixit, right, presents a special award to Indian choreographer Saroj Khan during the 20th International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) awards ceremony in Mumbai, India, early Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool) Image Credit: AP

Actress Kajol put up a picture of herself with Khan and praised her being the "most talented coolest choreographer ever."

Even Malayalam star Mohanlal tweeted his condolences and recalled working with Khan.

Statement from Dharma Productions
Choreographer-dancer Saroj Khan who lived to dance dedicated her entire life to the Indian film industry. Starting the career as a background dancer and working as an independent choreographer in Geeta Mera Naam, Saroj Khan soon rose to fame by her striking dancing skills. She not only choreographed songs in Bollywood but also in South industry which gave a lot of accolades and praises.

The ace choreographer gave the industry numerous super-hit numbers starting from Ek Do Teen to Dola Re Dola. Her last collaboration with Karan Johar’s Dharma Production for ‘Kalank’ where she choreographed the song 'Tabaah Ho Gaye'. The choreography was very much appreciated and praised for its remarkable specimen of classical Bollywood number. Saroj Khan gave the song a spiritual aspect and played with the expressions which made the song one of the best classical dance numbers.

Fondly known as 'Masterji' in her career spanning several decades, she is credited with choreographing over 2000 songs and won three National Awards. As she passes away leaving a beautiful legacy behind, we can only wish her soul to rest in peace.

It’s been a grim year for Bollywood following a spate of celebrity deaths. Khan’s death follows Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide on June 14 and the death of two acting legends Irrfan Khan and Rishi Kapoor.

Politicians have also tweeted their condolences to the family.

tab 200703 saroj khan5-1593751073255
Veteran Bollywood choreographer Saroj Khan dead. Image Credit: IANS

Union Minister Prakash Javdekar wrote: “Saroj Khan was a genius Choreographer, who impressed & entertained all with her iconic work. Shocked to know about her demise. A big loss to the film industry. Condolences to her family, friends & fans. Om Shanti.”

Shiv Sena leader Priyanka Chaturvedi also took to Twitter to condole the death of Saroj Khan. “My condolences to the family, friends and fans of Saroj Khan ji, really saddened to hear the news of her passing away. A lot of my childhood memories are of actors and actresses dancing to her steps as an ace choreographer. Rest in peace,” tweeted Chaturvedi.