Khushwant Singh
Khushwant Singh, India's best known columnist, passed away on Thursday in New Delhi.Reuters

Noted Indian author and journalist Khushwant Singh passed away on Thursday in New Delhi. He was 99.

Rahul Singh, the author's son, announced the news that his father breathed his last peacefully on Thursday at his residence in Sujan Singh Park, New Delhi.

Singh, who is known as India's best known columnist, was suffering from breathing problem and was not keeping well from quite a few times.   

Singh, who last month celebrated his 98th birthday, was born in Hadali, now in Pakistan. He wrote classics books like "Train to Pakistan", "I Shall Not Hear the Nightingale", "Black Jasmine", "Tragedy of Punjab" and "Delhi" among others.

He was a member of Rajya Sabha from 1980 to 1986. In 1974 he was awarded Padma Bhushan for his service towards the country, but he returned it in 1984 in protest against the storming of the Golden Temple by Indian army.

In 2007, he was awarded with the Padma Vibhushan by the Indian government.

Singh's last book was "The Good, The Bad and The Ridiculous" which was published in October 2013.

As per TV reports, the cremation ceremony of Singh will take place at around 4 pm on Thursday at Lodhi Crematorium.

Politicians, writers and celebrities expressed grief over the death of India's best known columnist: