Amou Haji (uncle Haji) smokes several cigarettes as he sits on the ground on the outskirts of the village of Dezhgah in the Dehram district of the southwestern Iranian Fars province, on December 28, 2018.
A man formerly described as the ‘world’s dirtiest’ has died soon after he was finally talked into having a shower.
Amou Haji reportedly gave up washing 67 years ago after becoming convinced that it could bring him bad luck, and even kill him.
Sadly, he did in fact end up dying shortly after he had a shower, though no link has been established.
State media said he died at the age of 94, although previous media reports about him in January this year had said he was 87.
He was well known for his unusual lifestyle choices, with the Tehran Times reporting in 2014 that he liked to eat raw roadkill, drink from puddles and smoke a pipe filled with dry animal excrement when he ran out of tobacco.
In 2018, he was pictured smoking four cigarettes at once while covered with soot.
Amou Haji sits in front of an open brick shack that the villagers constructed for him, on the outskirts of the village of Dezhgah in the Dehram distric
Villagers believe that he decided to live in isolation after suffering from an emotional setback in his youth
Amou Haji (uncle Haji) sits on the ground on the outskirts of the village of Dezhgah in the Dehram district of the southwestern Iranian Fars province, on December 28, 2018
A short documentary called ‘The Strange Life of Amou Haji’ was made about him in 2013.
As well as his hygiene habits, he was also known for his good health, with scientists even running tests on him last year to see if he had any diseases or parasites.
Dr Gholamreza Molavi from the School of Public Health in Tehran said that all they found was a Trichinosis parasitic infection which appeared to be causing no symptoms.
He concluded that he must have remained so healthy by developing an extremely strong immune system.
State-controlled news agency IRNA said that after rebuffing requests to shower for years, he finally relented after being told that a wash would help him win more friends.
They quoted a source saying ‘for the first time a few months ago, villagers had taken him to a bathroom to wash’.
But he became ill and then died at his home this weekend in Dejgah, a village in Fars province.
His funeral was due to take place today in Deirm Farashband.