Bengali author Buddhadeb Guha died at a private hospital in Kolkata on Sunday night, the Anandabazar Patrika reported. He was 85. Guha died after suffering a cardiac arrest while he was being treated for post-Covid complications. He was admitted at the Belle Vue Clinic in Kolkata since July 31.

Born in Kolkata in 1936, Guha spent his childhood in Rangpur and Barisal districts of present-day Bangladesh. He was married to Ritu Guha, a Rabindra Sangeet singer, who passed away in 2011.

Some of Guha’s most noted works include Jangalmahal, his debut novel, Koeler Kachhe, Kojagar, Ektu Usnotar Jonyo, Madhukari and Choroibeti. Many of his novels centred around themes related to the nature and forests of eastern India.

He also penned the Riju Da series, based on a fictional adventure enthusiast and conservationist Riju Bose. Guha’s novel Halud Basanta earned him the Ananda Puraskar in 1976 – a literary award given by the Anandabazar Patrika group.

Dictionary, a 2021 feature film by Bratya Basu, was based on two of Guha’s works, Baba Hoya and Swami Hoya.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee described Guha as one of the most celebrated authors of Bengal. “He leaves behind a huge void in Bengali literature,” she said. “Sincere condolences to his family and fans.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu and many other social media users condoled Guha’s death.