THEY wed in 1925 and after an incredible 87 years together Karam and Kartari Chand are thought to be one of the world’s longest married couples.
Karam 106, and wife Kartari, who will be 100 this year, tied the knot in a Sikh ceremony on January 6, 1925 in a village in the Punjab region of India.
Their family are checking with Guinness World Records to see whether they qualify for any records.
The Chands, who live in Bradford, have eight children, 27 grandchildren and 23 great-grandchildren and put their long marriage down to getting along with each other and enjoying life.
Mr Chand, who moved to the UK in 1965, said: “Eat and drink what you want but in moderation. I have never held back from enjoying my life.”
The retired mill worker smokes one cigarette a day before his evening meal and also drinks a tot of whisky or brandy three or four times a week.
Mrs Chand said: “We have always eaten good wholesome food, there’s nothing artificial in our diet but things like butter, milk and fresh yoghurt are what we like.
“We know that being married for 87 years 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.
“We just get along with each other and we are family focused. It’s simple really.”
The year the couple wed, 1925, was the year Margaret Thatcher was born, Stanley Baldwin was British Prime Minister and Bolton Wanderers won their second FA Cup.
Daughter Kaushalya Devi, 51, their third youngest child, an administrator, said: “I really feel proud that they have been married so long, lived so long and we have enjoyed their company so long.
“They are such wonderful parents and are there for their family all the time.
“For them to be officially the longest married couple in the world would be wonderful. We are so proud to have them as parents.”
Mrs Chand is looking forward to getting a letter from The Queen, who was born four months after the couple wed, when she celebrates her 100th birthday, and said that she and her husband enjoyed doing many things, such as eating meals together and going to the temple.
But the couple have found some aspects of their old age were difficult.
Mrs Chand said: “My eldest son died and that was hard for us because you don’t expect to outlive your own children.
“We have seen many other close family members depart and that’s something we just have to live with.
“When you get so old your eyesight and hearing starts to get weaker and you ache more when moving about.
“But considering our age and the hard work we have undertaken during our lives, we’re not doing so bad.”
Like many Asian people living in the UK, the Chands live within a traditional extended family.
Mr and Mrs Chand now live with their youngest son Satpal, his wife and two of their four children.
Satpal Chand said: ““We really feel blessed that our parents are still here with us and every day is a bonus.
“I think that keeping the minds of older people active is the key to them staying alert and healthy.
“If you have been given the privilege to look after your parents you must involve them fully in family life and never get angry with them, keep them happy and they will then look forward to getting up the next morning.”
Satpal said he would like to think that his parents were the longest married couple in the UK but added: ““Breaking records is not so important to us, it’s all about living together as one family and respecting each other’s values.
“If my mother and father are record breakers then they’ve made us even more proud of them than we already are.”
Record breakers in marriage line
UP until now Britain’s longest-ever marriage was officially that of Thomas and Elizabeth Morgan of Caerleon, Wales.
They wed on May 4, 1809 and remained married for 81 years 260 days until Elizabeth’s death on January 19, 1891.
Last February Herbert and Zelmyra Fisher of North Carolina, who wed in May 1924, entered the Guinness Book of Records as the world’s longest married couple. In 2010 Harold and Dorie Coupland from Scarborough, North Yorkshire celebrated 78 years of marriage, when both were aged 97.
A year earlier Frank Milford died aged 101 holding the hand of his wife Anita, whom he had wed 81 years earlier.