Actor and former MP, JK Ritheesh passes away due to cardiac arrest, he was 46

Actor and former Ramanathapuram MP JK Ritheesh passed away due to heart failure on Saturday. His untimely death came as a shock to many. He was 46.

JK Ritheesh was last seen playing a role in RJ Balaji’s political satire LKG. He became an MP from Ramanathapuram after he was given a DMK ticket in the 2009 Lok Sabha Elections. Born in Kandy, Sri Lanka, Ritheesh migrated to Rameswaram in 1976. His first film was Kaanal Neer directed by Chinni Jayanth. His second film Nayagan that released in 2008 failed at the box office. He is survived by his wife and two sons. 

According to reports, Ritheesh was campaigning for BJP's Ramanathapuram Lok Sabha candidate Nainar Nagendran when he suffered from a cardiac arrest.

Ritheesh, who was once a loyalist of MK Alagiri, former Union Minister and elder son of then DMK chief M Karunanidhi, quit the party in 2014 and joined rival AIADMK the same year. He had then claimed that he was pushed out of the party by MK Stalin, who was then DMK Treasurer.


(JK Ritheesh with former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and AIADMK chief J Jayalalithaa)

In December 2018, JK Ritheesh lead a small group of producers who marched up to TFPC’s offices in Chennai and staged a lock down protest. The act was performed to condemn TFPC President Vishal’s alleged lack of transparency in running the Council.

In 2011, he was arrested for cheating a US citizen of Rs 3 crore after promising to buy land for him.

A number of people took to Twitter to express their shock and condolences.