Actor Irrfan Khan, the Bollywood legend best known to Western audiences for his roles in Slumdog Millionaire and Life of Pi, has died. He was 53 and had been battling neuroendocrine cancer.

It is reported that Khan was admitted to hospital in Mumbai on Tuesday with a colon infection and passed away on Wednesday. He is survived by his wife Sutapa Sikdar and sons Babil and Ayan.

A spokesperson said Khan "spent his final hours surrounded by his love, his family for whom he most cared about".

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A family statement read: "'I trust, I have surrendered', these were some of the many words that Irrfan expressed in a heartfelt note he wrote in 2018 opening up about his fight with cancer.

"And a man of few words and an actor of silent expressions with his deep eyes and his memorable actions on screen. 

"It's saddening that this day, we have to bring forward the news of him passing away.  

"After having been struck by lightning in 2018 with the news of a rare cancer, he took life soon after as it came and he fought the many battles that came with it. 

"Surrounded by his love, his family for whom he most cared about, he left for heaven abode, leaving behind truly a legacy of his own.

"We all pray and hope that he is at peace. And to resonate and part with his words he had said, 'As if I was tasting life for the first time, the magical side of it'."

In a career spanning over 30 years and 50 films, Jaipur-born Khan became one of the most iconic actors in Indian cinema history, making his screen debut with the Oscar-nominated Salaam Bombay! in 1988.

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He went on to star in such films as The Warrior, The Namesake, Life in a... Metro, A Mighty Heart, The Darjeeling Limited, The Lunchbox, The Amazing Spider-ManJurassic World and Hindi Medium, his highest-grossing Hindi film.