Prolific Bollywood film-maker Ramanand Sagar, the producer of one of India's biggest television series, has died in Mumbai (Bombay). He was 87.

The maverick movie boss rose to fame as producer of Hindu TV epic RAMAYANA - one of 12 television shows and 25 films he masterminded in his screen career.

The hit show about deity Lord Rama, which spanned a staggering 78 episodes, was so popular in his native country that social activities often ground to a halt or were re-scheduled to make time for its broadcast on Sundays.

But Sagar's success with the show also prompted fears he was cashing in on Hindu nationalism.

The veteran producer, who launched his career as a technician, was still recovering from abdominal surgery he underwent four months ago when he died.

His son PREM SAGAR said, "All of us are born in this world, bring our deaths with us and no-one can stop it. His life came to an end and has left us."