Man purported to be world's oldest dies in India at age of 139

Other News Materials 19 August 2008 15:30 (UTC +04:00)

An Indian man reported to be the oldest in the world died in India's western city of Jaipur on Tuesday at the age of 139, dpa reported.

Habib Miyan was suffering from fever and dysentery and died in the early hours of Tuesday at a state-run hospital, the PTI news agency reported.

According to his pension card, Habib was born on May 20, 1878. But he said he was much older, a claim which was accepted by India's Limca Book of Records in its 2005 edition.

He was probably the oldest living person in the world but the Guinness Book of Records did not recognize him because of his official age on the pension papers, the NDTV network reported.

The centenarian retired from the musical band of the erstwhile Jaipur royal family as a clarinet player in 1938, before India became independent and the princely states joined the new republic in 1947.

Habib did not celebrate his birthday this year as he was saddened by serial blasts in the city on May 13 that claimed more than 60 lives, his 65-year-old grandson Chuttan Miyan told PTI.

Habib, who lost his vision half a century ago, leaves behind 140 grand- and great-grand children. His four sons and wife died several years ago, the news agency reported.