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World

93-Year-Old Indian Man Fulfills Dream Of Meeting Duke And Duchess

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The duke and duchess of Cambridge, William and Kate, are in India right now, and for 93-year-old Boman Kohinoor, life couldn't be better. Last week, a video team from Conde Nast Traveller found him at his Mumbai restaurant called Brittania and Company and he described himself this way.

(SOUNDBITE OF VIDEO)

BOMAN KOHINOOR: I am a fan of the royal family number one.

SIEGEL: I am a fan of the royal family number one.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

To prove it, he showed off a laminated letter from the queen and life-size cutouts of members of the royal family. He said he didn't know Will and Kate's itinerary in India.

(SOUNDBITE OF VIDEO)

KOHINOOR: But if they have heard about us and if they would like to visit us, they are most welcome.

SIEGEL: They did hear about him because that video went viral. And the royal couple invited him to the Taj Hotel in Mumbai before they attended a charity ball there.

KOHINOOR: I met them day before yesterday and I was highly honored. I was so very excited. I was very overjoyed.

SIEGEL: Our intern, Rikki Novetsky, reached Boman Kohinoor this morning, thanks to help from his granddaughter named - no surprise - Diana.

KOHINOOR: They are so sweet, so good and we talked about it and he asked me a few questions about my restaurant, what dishes we serve to the people, what they like. And I explained to them and they were very happy.

SHAPIRO: Kohinoor's restaurant, Brittania, is featured in many guidebooks as a landmark in Mumbai, though you can't get fish and chips there. It's a Parsi and Iranian restaurant. So why is he such a huge fan of the royal family?

KOHINOOR: They are so very good. They are so very cooperative, and I like the sense of justice of the British people.

SIEGEL: Boman Kohinoor says the enthusiasm goes back a generation in his family.

KOHINOOR: When the British people were ruling the country here in India, my father established the restaurant in 1923. And the British commissioner gave him permission to open the restaurant. And from that day onward we have always prospered.

SHAPIRO: Though he was happy to meet Will and Kate, he's still waiting for his favorite royal to visit.

KOHINOOR: Her majesty, Queen Elizabeth. She's number one.

SHAPIRO: Queen Elizabeth is his number one. That's 93-year-old British royal super fan and restaurant owner, Boman Kohinoor who met the duke and duchess of Cambridge on Sunday. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.