An Indian-origin man in the UK, believed to hold the record for the world’s longest marriage, has perished.

A UK-based Indian-origin man, Karam Chand believed to be holding the record for world’s longest marriage, has died at an incredible age of 110 years from natural causes. He was just six weeks short of celebrating his 111th birthday.

In 2015, Mr Chand and his wife Kartari, 103, became celebrities last year following their whopping 90th wedding anniversary. The couple never argued, according to their family. Although this was believed to be the world record it had never officially been recognised by Guinness World Records. The oldest Guinness-recorded marriage is the 86-year union of American couple Herbert and Zelmyra Fisher, both of whom have since died.

Karam Chand, who originally hailed from Punjab, was born in 1905 into a farming family. He had an arranged sikh marriage with Kartari. The couple came to Bradford in 1965 and was residing in in Girlington, near Bradford, West Yorkshire. He possessed a four generation-strong family, stretching down from Karam and includes seven children (four daughters and three sons), 27 grandchildren and dozens of great-grandchildren. On his long marriage, Chand once said “We know that being married for so long is a blessing – but equally we will be ready to go when it’s time. It’s all up to the will of God, but we really have lived a good life”.

Chand’s son Harbhajan Das quoted “My father often said ‘happiness and contentment is what keeps me going through such a long and beautiful life’”. Harbhajan, who retired as a manager from the State Bank of Patiala, said for holding a remarkable record of the longest union his parents were invited in Buckingham Palace by the Queen in 2014.

Karam Chand’s food habit was unique and disciplined. He used to take breakfast at 6:30 AM and used to eat two chapatis in lunch as well as in dinner and ate apple daily. He had a strong eye sight, and used to read Punjabi books daily without the help of spectacles.

Chand had said he had given his one cigarette a day – but still appreciated an occasional tot of whiskey up. “We have consistently eaten food that was good wholesome, there’s nothing manufactured in our diet, but things like milk, butter, and fresh yogurt are what we like,” he had said. “Eat and drink what you want but in moderation. I have never held back from enjoying my life,” was Chand food mantra for healthy life. The family had put their parents’ incredible longevity down to their hard-working lives when they were younger, a lifetime of eating clean food and their inter-generational living arrangements.

His union with his wife lasted 90 years and 291 days in total. It’d never formally been recognized by Guinness World Records although this is believed to be the world record. His wife, Mrs. Kartari, who will turn 104 on 1st November 2016, stated that she consider themselves blessed to have been married and lived for long and now that her husband has died she will pray for his repose.

 

by Ashwani Srivastava

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