Ziona Chana, who shot to fame as the head of the world’s largest family, passed away in Mizoram on Sunday (June 13). Chana, 76, leaves behind 38 wives and 89 children.
Chana, who suffered from diabetes and high blood pressure, breathed his last at his hometown of Baktawng Tlangnuam, a village in Serchhip district of Mizoram.
According to multiple reports, his brood of at least 180 members is believed to be the world’s largest family.
The family lives in a four-storied mansion named “Chuuar Than Run” or New Generation House, situated around 55 km from Aizawl. As per reports, his wives share a dormitory near Chana’s private bedroom. The mansion hosts 100 rooms and is a major attraction for tourists visiting the state.
“With a heavy heart, Mizoram bid(s) farewell to Mr. Zion-a (76), believed to head the world’s largest family, with 38 wives and 89 children,” tweeted Mizoram Chief Minister, Zoramthanga. The Mizoram CM, while paying his respects, said how Chana and his family’s local celebrity status helped develop that village’s tourism prospects.
Chana was the leader of a Christian sect named Chana Pawl. The sect, established in 1942 by Chana’s father, is known for its practice of polygamy.
According to Reuters, Chana was born in 1945. At 17, he married his first wife, three years elder to him. He married last in 2004. It is extensively reported that the family was featured twice on the popular TV show Ripley’s Believe it or Not.