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World's Largest Family - Baktawng, Aizawl District

Recorded in the Guinness Book of World Record as the Worlds Largest Family, the joint family is headed by Pu Ziona, who has 38 wives, 89 children and a large number of grandchildren. A total of 162 members of the family live in a four-storied building called 'Chhuanthar Run' or Home of the New Generation in Baktawng village 70 kms from Aizawl.

Living as a religious community, the family owns jhums, orchards, furniture workshops, manufactures aluminium utensils and are known for their self- sufficiency, craftsmanship, hardwork and entrepreneurship skills.

Originally known as 'Khuangtuaha Pawl', a breakaway group of the Presbyterian Church, the religious sect came into being on June 12, 1942 after Khuangtuaha, the founder was evicted from Hmawngkawn village by the village chief. Christian missionaries at that time felt that the theology of Khuangtuaha who believed in the use of drums as an instrument of worship was too liberal and dangerous. After the death of Khuangtuaha they renamed themselves 'Chana Pawl'. They still observe June 12 every year as ''Bawkte Kut' or 'Festival of the Hut' to commemorate the eviction and birth of the sect.

Chana, who inherited the baton from his late brother Khuangtuaha believed in polygamy and that God permitted him to marry as many wives as he could feed. After Chana died on 27th February, 1997, the leadership of the sect was taken over by his eldest son Ziona, who reportedly has more wives than his father.

The members of this religious community do not mind being called a religious sect because they take pride in nurturing the legacy of 'Lalpa Kohhran' (The Lord's Church) founded by their godfather Chana in 1966. The administration of the religious community is so complete that besides the religious aspect of the unit, the 'Lalpa Kohhran Family' have their own school called Chhuanthar Students Home (Class V to Class X) and a playground they call Chhuanthar Stadium.

Their way of life can be experienced by staying with them at their guest house in Baktawng village.

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