Actress Tunisha Sharma Found Dead in Co-Star's Dressing Room

Actress Tunisha Sharma was found dead on the set of her latest TV series, Alibaba – Dastaan-e-Kabul, on Dec. 24. Sharma reportedly attempted to take her own life in a dressing room at the set in Naigaon in western India. Her co-star and former boyfriend, Sheezan Khan, was arrested for his alleged role in her death. Sharma was 20.

Sharma reportedly went into a dressing room and was there for an extended period. Others on the set broke down the door and found Sharma inside. Staffers on the set took Sharma to a nearby hospital, where she was declared dead, senior inspector Kailash Barve of Valiv police station told The Indian Express on Dec. 25. Police said they would investigate her death as a suicide and possible murder.

Khan was arrested on Saturday after Sharma's mother filed a case of abetment to suicide. Sharma and Khan reportedly broke up 15 days before her death, according to NDTV. Surveillance footage also shows Khan among the people who took her to the hospital. Khan told police Sharma tried to take her own life a few days before her death, but he stopped her, a police source told the news agency ANI. The actor claimed they split after he was "so disturbed by the atmosphere in the country that emerged after the gruesome murder of Shraddha Walkar."

However, Sharma's uncle, Pawan Sharma, told NDTV that Sharma recently learned that Khan, 28, was having affairs with other women. "Both ate at the makeup room. No one knows what happened after that. We got a call asking us to come," Pawan said, adding that his niece "never tried to commit suicide" before. "She was in a lot of stress. That's why her mother was worried about her," Pawan added.

Sharma's mother, Vanita Sharma, has also accused Khan of cheating on her daughter. "Sheezan cheated on Tunisha. He started a relationship with her first, promised her marriage, and then broke up with her. He was involved with another girl, while he was in a relationship with Tunisha," she said. Police sources told The Hindustan Times they were investigating the claims. Meanwhile, forensic teams were at the set to examine the scene. Sharma's body has also been turned over to her family, and her last rites were performed on Tuesday.

"She was a very happy person and spoke to everyone on the set. We have had some really good conversations, but she never opened up whether she was bothered about anything. As actors, we are used to masking up our emotions and not sharing our pain with anyone," actor Athar Siddiqui, who worked with Sharma, told The Indian Express. "Also, with a lot of young people looking up to us, we always have to put on a strong face. It's so sad whatever has happened."   

If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call or text 988 to reach the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline. The previous Lifeline phone number (1-800-273-8255) will always remain available.