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Actor Narendra Jha dies of a heart attack, was 55

The actor died at his farmhouse in Wada on Wednesday morning.

Film and television actor Narendra Jha died on Wednesday morning following a heart attack at his farmhouse in Nanegaon in Nashik. He was 55. The actor is survived by his wife, former censor board CEO Pankaja Thakur.

According to an IANS report, Jha had complained of chest pain. “He had no health issues and last night (Tuesday) he was fine,” Jha’s driver, Lakshman Singh, told IANS. “He ate properly and spoke to us... Things were fine. Around 4am today, he felt a chest pain so we took him to a nearby hospital, but everything was over by then.”

Jha’s television credits include Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi, Ek Ghar Banaunga, Chhoona Hai Aasmaan and Begusarai. He also played important character roles in A-list films, including Raees (2017), Kaabil (2017) and Haider (2014).

Jha was born on September 2, 1962, in Bihar. After graduating in history from Jawaharlal Nehru University, he completed a diploma course in acting and then moved to Mumbai to pursue a career in show business. He made his debut in Chandraprakash Dwivedi’s Doordarshan show Mrityunjay (1997-1998). Jha played the role of Arjuna in the popular mythological show.

Jha made his film debut in Shyam Benegal’s Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose: The Forgotten Hero (2005), where he played nationalist leader Habibur Rahman. Jha’s next collaboration with Benegal was in the mini-series Samvidhaan: The Making of the Constitution of India, which was premiered on Rajya Sabha TV in 2014. Jha played Pakistan’s founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah.

In Vishal Bhardwaj’s Hamlet adaptation Haider, Jha played Hilaal Meer, a Kashmiri doctor who is wrongly accused of harbouring terrorists. His other credits include Ghayal Once Again (2016), Kaalakandi (2017), Kaabil (2017) and Raaes (2017). Among his final films are the under-production Race 3 and Saaho.

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People who fall through the gaps in road safety campaigns

Helmet and road safety campaigns might have been neglecting a sizeable chunk of the public at risk.

City police, across the country, have been running a long-drawn campaign on helmet safety. In a recent initiative by the Bengaluru Police, a cop dressed-up as ‘Lord Ganesha’ offered helmets and roses to two-wheeler riders. Earlier this year, a 12ft high and 9ft wide helmet was installed in Kota as a memorial to the victims of road accidents. As for the social media leg of the campaign, the Mumbai Police made a pop-culture reference to drive the message of road safety through their Twitter handle.

But, just for the sake of conversation, how much safety do helmets provide anyway?

Lack of physical protections put two-wheeler riders at high risk on the road. According to a recent report by the World Health Organisation (WHO), more than 1.25 million people die each year as a result of road traffic crashes. Nearly half of those dying on the world’s roads are ‘vulnerable road users’ – pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists. According to the Indian transport ministry, about 28 two-wheeler riders died daily on Indian roads in 2016 for not wearing helmets.

The WHO states that wearing a motorcycle helmet correctly can reduce the risk of death by almost 40% and the risk of severe injury by over 70%. The components of a helmet are designed to reduce impact of a force collision to the head. A rigid outer shell distributes the impact over a large surface area, while the soft lining absorbs the impact.

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This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Reliance General Insurance and not by the Scroll editorial team.