Miss World Pageant


There are mixed feelings towards pageants and I understand. There are many aspects of the pageant world that are harmful to girl’s and women’s psyche. I have also felt the scorn of my looks being critiqued by family members, classmates, and myself. As an Indo-Fijian, a Pacific Islander from Fiji my family was shipped there as indentured servants from India, I possess Indian attributes that I have been instructed to be ashamed of. Straighten my curly hair, bleach my brown skin, remove my sideburns, and tweeze my eyebrows thin. I was bullied about my hairline, scalp, and the shape of my nose which I wasn’t able to change.

I assumed for years that a person that looked Indian was not beautiful. I have made great efforts last year to change my view on Indians and my own looks. In December 2019, the Miss World winner was Toni-Ann Singh of Jamaica whose father is of Indo-Jamaican descent. Singh is a quarter Indian which got me wondering if any other Indians won the pageant. I have been making strides on my own part to improve my view of myself and it doesn’t hurt to learn that India holds the record for most Miss World wins. Suggesting that though I was bullied, my features are not hated by everyone. 

  1. 1. The first Indian woman to win Miss World was Reita Faria in 1966. Faria is an Indian model and went on to become a doctor.

  2. 2. Next was Aishwarya Rai in 1994 who modeled in college and after her win she jumped into films. Her first film being Iruvar in 1997.

  3. 3. Third winner was Diana Hayden in 1997. After winning she starred in commercials with her Bollywood debut in Tehzeeb (2003).

  4. 4. Fourth was Yukta Mookhey who won in 1999. Mookhey earned a degree in Zoology and Computer Sciences. 

  5. 5. The fifth winner was Priyanka Chopra in 2000. Chopra became a famous Bollywood actress and jumped to Hollywood in 2017 with the film Baywatch.

  6. 6. Our sixth crowned Indian Miss World was Manushi Chhillar in 2017. Chhillar will be making her Bollywood debut in 2020 in the upcoming film Prithviraj. 


So, to my Indian sisters, if you have been bullied for your features the way I have, remember that women with these same looks won Miss World six times!