Kalikaprasad Bhattacharjee's body was brought to state secretariat Nabanna in the afternoon. (PTI photo)
Popular Bengali folk singer Kalikaprasad Bhattacharjee died in a fatal accident in West Bengal's Hooghly district on Tuesday after his car reportedly lost control and fell off the highway, police said.
"Mr Bhattacharjee died in a car accident on the Durgapur Expressway near Hoogly's Gurap on Tuesday morning. The car hit the roadside railing and fell 20 feet below into a marshy low land. One of the SUV's wheels came off during the accident. We are investigating the case," police said.
Four other members of his popular Bengali folk band Dohar and the driver were injured. They were admitted to two different hospitals in critical condition.
The five were on their way to perform at a cultural programme in Birbhum district when the accident occured.
The singer was pulled out of the mangled car along with his band members and the driver and all were taken to the Bardhaman Medical College and Hospital where doctors declared him dead.
"Six men, including Kalikaprasad Bhattacharjee, were brought to the hospital today. We have released one of them after primary treatment while two others have been referred to Bangur Institute of Neurosciences. The driver and one of the band members are still under treatment in the hospital," said a hospital source.
Mr Bhattacharjee, 45, is survived by his wife and a daughter.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee expressed grief at the singer's sudden demise terming it as a "personal loss".
"Shocked at the tragic demise of Kalikaprasad Bhattacharjee of Dohar. His passing is a big loss to Bengali music. Kalikaprasad's demise is a personal loss. He was a close friend. Condolences to his family and fans," Ms Banerjee wrote on Twitter.
Mr Bhattacharjee's body reached Kolkata on Tuesday afternoon and was brought to state secretariat Nabanna where the Chief Minister paid her last respects. Later, the cortege was taken to the state auditorium, Rabindra Sadan, where cultural personalities, ministers, music lovers and a large number of commoners paid their tributes.
"Kalika was a great singer and a wonderful person. He worked really hard to bring the folk songs to the forefront. It is a great loss for us," said eminent Bengali singer Haimanti Sukla.