x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Nepalese man is world's shortest person ever recorded

A doctor and Guinness World Records official measured Chandra Bahadur Dangi in Katmandu to confirm his height of 54.6 centimetres or 21.5 inches.

Chandra Bahadur Dangi, 72, reads a copy of the Guinness World Record book before being measured as the world's shortest man by officials. Niranjan Shrestha / AP Photo
Chandra Bahadur Dangi, 72, reads a copy of the Guinness World Record book before being measured as the world's shortest man by officials. Niranjan Shrestha / AP Photo

KATMANDU // A 72-year-old Nepalese man who is about the size of a toddler is officially the world's shortest person ever recorded.

A doctor and Guinness World Records official measured Chandra Bahadur Dangi to confirm his height of 54.6 centimetres or 21.5 inches.

Craig Glenday, the Guinness World Records editor-in-chief, presented Mr Dangi with two certificates for being the world's shortest living man and the world's shortest person recorded in Guinness' 57-year history.

"I am very happy. Now I want to travel across Nepal and to foreign countries," Mr Dangi said.

He said he has no desire to get married or have a family of his own, but would like to meet the prime minister of Nepal soon.

Mr Dangi lives in a remote mountain village, Rhimkholi, about 400 kilometres west of Katmandu, with his youngest brother and his family. His five brothers are all average height.

"I'm continually amazed that this record keeps getting broken," Mr Glenday said in a statement after the adjudication in the Nepali capital Kathmandu.

"Just when you think it's impossible for the record to get any smaller, Mr. Dangi comes along and astonishes us all.

"What I find equally remarkable is his age — if he really is 72, he is by far the oldest person to be awarded the shortest-man record in Guinness World Record's 57-year history."

Before being measured in the capital, Katmandu, yesterday, he had never seen a doctor and his relatives say he has never been seriously ill or had any injuries. The doctors who saw him at the clinic also found no immediate health problems. His family is not sure when he stopped growing.

Because of his height, he has never worked outside the house, doing only household chores.

He has a normal sized head and regularly shaves, but his body is small. He is able to walk and climb small stairs. He eats mainly rice and vegetables, and occasionally meat, but in small portions.

Mr Dangi takes the shortest man record from Junrey Balawing of the Philippines, who is 60cm tall. He also beat the record of Gul Mohammed of India as the shortest adult human to have their height verified by Guinness. Mohammed, who died in 1997, was 57cm tall.

Since Mr Dangi's village is so remote, it was only recently that Mr Dangi gained notice. A forest contractor cutting timber in the village met him and told local media.

Another Nepalese man, Khagendra Thapa Magar, was declared the world's shortest man at 67cm before Mr Balawing took over the title in June on his 18th birthday.

In December, Guinness recognised an Indian teenager as the world's shortest woman. Jyoti Amge is 62.8cm tall and wants to attend university and become a Bollywood star.

Aside from a Guinness certificate, the titles do not come with a cash award.