1. ITV Report

Legendary Indian sitarist Ravi Shankar dies aged 92

The Indian sitar virtuoso and composer Ravi Shankar has died at the age of 92 near his home in southern California.

Shankar is widely credited with introducing Indian music to the Western world through his collaborations with other artists, including the Beatles.

A statement released by his family said he had undergone treatment that "could have potentially given him a new lease of life" but that it had proved unsuccessful.

We (his family) were at his side, when he passed away.

We know that you all feel our loss with us and we thank you for all your prayers and good wishes through this difficult time.

Although it is a time for sorrow and sadness, it is also a time for all of us to give thanks and to be grateful that we were able to have him as part of our lives.

– family statement
Ravi Shankar performs in the eastern Indian city of Kolkata Credit: Reuters

Shankar's students include George Harrison and jazz saxophonist John Coltrane.

He was a direct influence on the Beatles' tracks Norwegian Wood and Within You, Without You.

His legendary appearances at the Monterey and Woodstock festivals in the late Sixties helped him to become a household name in the West.

In the video below, Shankar can be seen giving Harrison a lesson in 1968 at a retreat in Rishikesh, northern India.

A man of many talents, Shankar also wrote the Oscar-nominated score for 1982 film "Gandhi," several books, and mounted theatrical productions.

He was equally influential in the classical world - both for his collaborations with violinist Yehudi Menuhin and his compositions for sitar and orchestra.

Ravi Shankar perfoms with his daughter Anoushka Shankar (R) in Calcutta in 2002.

Shankar was also known for his political and campaigning work - most notably as a patron of the animal welfare group PETA.

He also served as a member of the upper chamber of the Parliament of India, from 1986 to 1992, after being nominated by then Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.

Ravi Shankar (R) kisses a two-and-a-half month old goat rescued from an abattoir, with his wife Sukanya Shankar Credit: REUTERS/Punit Paranjpe PP/TW

Shankar was born in 1920 in India's holiest city, Varanasi into relative poverty.

After his eldest brother moved the family to Paris, he spent almost a decade dancing in his brother's Indian classical and folk dance troupe, before learning the sitar.

Norah Jones performing at the Hammersmith Apollo in west London Credit: Matt Crossick/EMPICS Entertainment

Both of Shankar's daughters followed him into the music world. Norah Jones is a successful singer-songwriter, and Anoushka Shankar is a respected sitar player.

Shankar continued playing sitar right up until the end of his life. His last concert, performed with his daughter Anoushka, was in November in Long Beach, California.

He is also survived by three grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.