A pensioner who went missing while on the hunt for mangoes has been found alive after being lost in a forest for six days.

Thai villager Inpan Wongkhamnuan, 70, went missing after heading into a nearby forest in search of his favourite mangoes, with the pensioner mistakenly heading deeper into the jungle.

The 70-year-old ventured into the forest near his home, but instead of taking a path leading him to an orchard ended up heading deep into the heart of a jungle in Lampang, northern Thailand.

Concerned family members reported his disappearance to authorities, who launched a search and rescue operation to bring back Wongkhamnuan from his mango-retrieval mission.

Up to 100 villagers were on hand to locate the 70-year-old, who says he prayed for someone to come and save him from the heart of the jungle.

Wongkhamnuan was found after nearly a week of searching, starving in a hut around three miles away from his home.

The mango-loving pensioner said: "I do not have a mobile phone and I could not find the way back. So I just waited and prayed that people would find me."

Wongkhamnuan's sister, Sawat Techa, 52, said: "My brother told me that he was craving for mangoes so he went to pick them but he did not return that night. I asked our village chief for help."

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A rescue operation mobilised by officer Bandit Charoen found the man, with volunteers putting the pensioner onto a stretcher and carrying out medical checks as they brought the man out of the jungle in a two hour trek.

Wongkhamnuan was transferred to a local hospital where his condition was reported as stable, Daily Mail reported.

Rescue leader Charoen said: "There was no supplies of food or water in the jungle so the old man had to survive on what he could forage.

"A few more days and he would have not had enough energy to carry on."

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