Chandra Bahadur Dangi, 72, from southern Nepal, may soon claim the honor of being the next world’s shortest man.
Orphaned at 12 with five normal-sized brothers, Chandra has lived a sad life without love or romance or personal fulfillment.
For a man who has always lived in the shadows of freak shows and been subjected to public humiliation even at the hands of his own relatives, who would treat him as a toy, his tiny stature has always been his own private curse–until now.
Proudly, Chandra stands at 56 centimeters and weighs some 12 kilos.
This places him a few centimeters shorter than Junrey Balawing from the Philippines, who until now has held the title of the world’s smallest living man, at a height of 59.93 centimeters (a shade short of 2 feet).
It will be the experts at Guinness World Records who will confirm the truth. They plan to travel to Chandra’s remote village in order to properly measure him.
If his measurements prove correct, the honor will be two-fold as he will not only claim the title of world’s shortest man, but also become the shortest human adult ever documented.
This recognition at the end of his tortured life could be some compensation for all of the hardships Chandra has been forced to endure over the years.
“I think things will be better now. I hope that I will be famous … I want to visit foreign countries and meet people from around the world,” he said proudly.
Before he became somewhat of a celebrity in southern Nepal, Chandra eked out a living by weaving the “Naamlo,” a traditional jute band used for carrying heavy weights.
Ignorance and public censure of a human being whose condition is no fault of his own are the real “shortcomings” here; of tolerance, of love and compassion for someone whose only crime is that he looks different.
Shame, shame, shame!