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Actor Tom Alter suffering from cancer, son confirms news

The Indian Express logo The Indian Express 11-09-2017 priyanka sharma
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Film and theatre actor Tom Alter has been diagnosed with cancer. The Padma Shri awardee is popularly known for his stint on TV show Zabaan Sambhalke. The 67-year-old multi-faceted performer is suffering from fourth stage bone cancer, sources close to Alter told indianexpress.com. The news came less than a week after Alter was discharged from a city hospital, where he was admitted for "body pain".

His son Jemie Alter confirmed the news, when we got in touch with him. He however preferred not to divulge more details about the actor's condition. "It's not a good time to talk. I will call you in the evening," Jemie said. After the news of Alter's hospitalisation broke, there were murmurs about an apparent serious disease, but they were rebutted by famous playwright Sayeed Alam, who has collaborated with Alter on many plays, and was also set to direct him on a production.

The Indian actor of American descent, Tom Alter made his big screen debut in 1976 with a small role in Dharmendra-starrer Charas and later went on to work in films like Shatranj Ke Khiladi, Gandhi, Kranti, Bose: The Forgotten Hero and Veer Zara. But it was his sitcom Zabaan Sambhalke (1993-1997) that made him a household name. The series, also starring Pankaj Kapoor, was the adaptation of British sitcom, Mind Your Language (1977).

Tom Alter was also a part of other hit TV shows like Shaktiman and Captain Vyom, both extremely popular with kids. Alter's last Bollywood film was director Imran Khan's Sargoshiyan, which released earlier this year. Besides films and television, Alter's presence in theatre has been noteworthy. His play, In Ghalib In Delhi, had many shows across the country. He played the lead role of celebrated poet Mirza Ghalib.

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