Pageant High - History - Ch-1 - India (1966)

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Welcome dear students to Pageant High, a reputed university in the world of pageantry where we shall be teaching you anything and everything pageants. This happens to be your first ever history class with us so today we shall be talking about the first ever benchmark set by Indians in the World of Pageantry. Let's travel back in time and witness the magic first hand, now shall we?

 It’s 1966, pageantry has made its way into the Asian continent for quite a few years now and India is expecting its first ever victory at two of the biggest international pageants - Miss Universe and Miss World, with our strongest queens - Reita Faria and Yasmin Daji. Incredibly beautiful and extremely intellectual, these queens are unaware of the impact they are about to have on the world, especially for the growing world of pageants in India. 

Reita Faria, the winner of 1966’s Miss India contest, was a medical student hoping to be a successful gynaecologist one day. She was born in Bombay, on 23rd August 1943 to Goan parents. Her father worked in a mineral water factory, while her mother ran a salon. She and her elder sister Philomena were brought up in a very middle class environment with nothing fancy or glamorous. Standing 5ft and 8 inches tall, Reita had previously participated in the Miss Bombay pageant, where she was crowned as the winner. She later went on to participate at the Eve’s Weekly Miss India pageant in the same year, which she also ended up winning, giving her the right to represent India at the annual Miss World Pageant. Coming from a middle class family, Reita borrowed a saree and a pair of footwear from one of her friends to participate in the Miss World competition. However, she could not fit into her borrowed wardrobe, owing to her height, which is why she had to purchase her own saree and heels. The crown of Miss World saw a total of 52 gorgeous women competing for it on 17th November, at the Lyceum Ballroom located in London.

Reita was announced as the winner of “Best in Swimsuit '' as well as the “Best in Evening Wear” for wearing a saree during the evening wear round. Reita won the crown for India - making her the first ever Indian to ever win an international beauty pageant, also making her the first asian woman to ever win the Miss World crown. Following her victory, Reita had to visit many countries and one such international trip was that of Vietnam where she went to support and cheer for the American troops during the Vietnam War. This was not very well received by the Indian government and she was highly criticised by the supporters of Vietnam. Post her reign, Reita began receiving offers from the modelling and acting industry of India, which were all declined by her as her dream was to pursue her medical career and become a gynaec. Reita will go on to become the first ever Miss World that could qualify as a physician. She would later go back to London for further studies, where she would fall in love with her mentor David Powell and marry him in 1971 and will have two beautiful daughters - Deirdre and Ann Marie. They live in Dublin as of 2022, the time we come from.

Yasmin Daji - Our bet for the universe this year, was a nineteen year old, yet another incredibly beautiful medical aspirant. Yasmin was born on 16th May 1947 in New York, USA. She won the title of Femina Miss India shortly before her 19th birthday - on May 8th 1966, also winning the rights to represent India at the Miss Universe competition that year. She had also won the title of Miss Beautiful Smile at Femina. Her performance at the annual Miss Universe competition was phenomenal, and it bagged her the 3rd runner up position at the international contest. This was the closest India had ever been to the most coveted Miss Universe crown uptill now. After gaining popularity as Miss Universe’s runner up, Yasmin became the face of Lure cosmetics in India and was also mentioned in the book - Pride Of India by none other than Miss India 1965 - Persis Kambatta. Post her Miss Universe journey, Yasmin completed her studies and shifted back to the United States, where she started practising medicine as a doctor and got married. She later had two sons. There were quite a few rumours and speculations about her death in the present time of 2022, but she is alive and in good health back in the USA.

1966, is the year that fueled the craze of pageants in India, motivating her to strive towards becoming the powerhouse of pageantry, a goal that she shall achieve in the 90s. This year and its Indian queens are also one of the oldest epitomes of feminism. We must remember that this was the time where not many girls were allowed to participate in events like beauty pageants, some were not even allowed to leave their homes. The fortunate ones that could somehow enter the industry were seen as mere pieces of attraction, who could be used as a beautiful face to attract audiences to watch movies or customers to buy endorsed products. In the era where girls were still denied education in most parts of the world, India gave the world not one, but two doctor queens. 

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Miss Earth 2022 - Overview (Part3 - Final Part)

The last time we met, we discussed the few pre pageant activities that were judged based on the elemental division done by the organisers, the finale top 20 and top 12 announcements and then the iconic hashtag round where the 8 qualifying ladies spoke on the hashtag given to them, all under the time limit of thirty seconds! The judges had to eliminate four out of these eight ladies, based on their hashtag round speech, to give us our top flour for the Miss Earth 2022 pageant. One of these four ladies would later go on to win the final title of Miss Earth 2022 while the other three will be each crowned as her elemental queens - Miss Air, Miss Fire and Miss Water! Without any further ado, lets look into the final parts of the Miss Earth Finale.

Before moving on to the announcement of the final four, our lovely Filipino-British host, James Hernandez Deakin cheerfully revealed the host country for the Miss Earth’s 2023 edition. The host country for ME’23 is none other than the beautiful, culturally rich pageant loving south east asian country of Vietnam. Vietnam is hosting many pageants in the upcoming year, and also, do not cancel us for this one but, they are also standing up against any drama loving, body shaming pageant organisations by, you know, cancelling their plans with them. Just wanted to remind y’all hehe. Love Vietnam, be like Vietnam! JAmes also revealed that the preparations for ME’23 pageant has already begun in Vietnam as early as now and we can expect a grand, oops not grand! An extravagant pageant for the next edition of Miss Earth. We sure do love Vietnam and the power of their production and glamour. The next edition sure looks promising and we are EXCITED!

Got a little too excited there, lets fly back into the present year - 2022. After the host country announcement, the sub contest winners of best eco video were announced, continent wise. We have already discussed the winner in the first part of this Miss Earth 2022 series so let us now move on to the final 4 announcements. The final four, in the order of their announcement were -

  1. Australia
  2. Colombia
  3. Palestine
  4. Korea

The final 4 ladies were made to wear headphones, so they could not hear the final question that was common between them, along with the answers given by the ladies before them. Each lady was given thirty seconds to answer one common question, that was -

“What is the one thing you want to write in this world, and how would you write it?”

The ladies were called in the order of their top 4 announcement and we have listed their answers for your reference down below. Starting with the Australian Taylor Swift -


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Miss Earth 2022 - Overview (Part2)

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And we are back! Last article, we discussed the various competitions held at the annual Miss Earth Pageant’s 2022 edition and also listed down the countries grouped in the different elemental groups. Today, we shall be discussing the further competition and the performance of each group. So far we see Belarus, Colombia, the Philippines and Nigeria leading the scoreboard with  their stellar performance in each round so far. Lets see if our list changes after the coming rounds.

The first sub contest that we shall be looking into would be the good old Best in Beach Wear contest. It was held in various parts of the Philippines on 18th and 19th of November. Women were dressed in beachwear outfits of their choice and comfort and presented themselves in front of the judges. The winners were announced as per the elemental division given in our last article and they were as follows -


🥇South Korea


🥉 Venezuela












🥉United States

The next competition would be the long gown or the evening gown competition where ladies would walk on stage in the gown of their choice. The winners here were again chosen following the elemental division and they are -

AIR - 

🥇South Korea

🥈Puerto Rico













🥉United States

The next contest was the resort wear competition. This competition was not judged on the basis of any division and three medals were given out in total. The top 3 for the Resort Wear Competition this year at Miss Earth were -


🥈Puerto Rico

🥉South Korea

Finally, we arrive at the last of the sub contests, and one of the very important ones too - the Talent Round. Here, women from all over the world present their unique talents in front of the judges. In our opinion, this round is also one of the toughest rounds to judge as there is absolutely no uniformity in performance and so no standard can be used to base ones judgement on. Regardless, the winners were announced once again in the elemental format as follows -



🥈New Zealand














After Considering the placements in all the rounds of the competition and videos of the performances, here is the list of the contestants that we consider as the strongest for the pageant, of course in no particular order -

Colombia, Belarus, South Korea, the United States, the Philippines, Nigeria,Australia,Puerto Rico, Cuba, Portugal, Venezuela, Indonesia, Zimbabwe, Chile, Ireland, Russia, Mexico, Namibia, Thailand and Brazil.

However, not everyone from our list made the top 20 of the pageant, considering how pageantry is definitely more than what meets the eye and the judges have definitely seen and judged the girls at a more personal level than we have. Here are the fortunate beauties who could make it to the list of finalists at the Miss Earth 2022 pageant, listed in the order of their announcement - 

  1. Belgium – Daphné Nivelles
  2. Ethiopia - Hiwot Kassa
  3. Brazil – Jéssica Pedroso
  4. Australia – Sheridan Mortlock
  5. Colombia – Andrea Aguilera
  6. Namibia - Diana Andimba
  7. Netherlands -  Merel Hendriksen 
  8. Palestine - Nadeen Ayoub
  9. Cuba – Sheyla Ravelo
  10. Nigeria - Ester Ajayi
  11. Ireland - Alannah Larkin
  12. Korea - Mina Sue Choi
  13. Slovenia - Lea Prstec
  14. Zimbabwe - Sakhile Dube
  15. Vietnam - Thạch Thu Thảo
  16. Norway -  Lilly Sødal
  17. Puerto Rico - Paulina Avilés
  18. Czech Republic – Anežka Heralecká
  19. Philippines - Jenny Ramp
  20. Portugal - Maria Rosado 

These ladies participated in the final swimsuit competition and only twelve could advance further into the next round. The top twelve for the Miss Earth 2022 pageant were - 

  1. Brazil – Jéssica Pedroso
  2. Belgium – Daphné Nivelles
  3. Zimbabwe - Sakhile Dube
  4. Nigeria - Ester Ajayi
  5. Colombia – Andrea Aguilera
  6. Australia – Sheridan Mortlock
  7. Puerto Rico - Paulina Avilés
  8. Palestine - Nadeen Ayoub
  9. Cuba – Sheyla Ravelo
  10. Portugal - Maria Rosado 
  11. Netherlands -  Merel Hendriksen 
  12. Korea - Mina Sue Choi

And further, the judges narrowed these ladies down to the last 8 standing, based on their short evening gown performance on stage during the Finale night. These top 8 ladies were then further narrowed down to the last 4 standing, based on their responses of the hashtag round. Hashtag round is one of the most unique rounds at the Miss Earth pageants where each of the qualified ladies has to pick up a card, with a unique hashtag enclosed in it, from the bowl present in front of her. She is then given 30 seconds to elaborate and express her thoughts on the hashtag she has received. We have listed down the top 8 ladies, with their topics and their speech during the hashtag round for you to be the judge - 

  1. Palestine - Nadeen Ayoub - #OpenMinded 
    I think in order to make a difference in the world, you have to be open minded. Especially when advocating for environmental protection because to truly be an advocate for the environment you have to accept everyone equally, no matter where they come from. The environment, it transcends our social differences and it sees us as human beings and that's what we must do with each other in order to progress towards saving our planet earth. So lets come together, be open minded and save our planet.
  2. Australia – Sheridan Mortlock - #Fairness
    When it comes to climate and the effects it has on people, it is unfair. Those that live in third world countries, or perhaps even in poverty, often bear the brunt of climate change even though they are often not the perpetrators. It is those in first world countries, who are over consuming that are causing the most problems. So in order to create a world where climate change is equal, we first must be equitable in how we handle it.
  3. Korea - Mina Sue Choi - #Loyalty
    I think it's very important to be loyal to the ones we love, and especially our earth as we live and we reside in this single planet called earth, and with loyalty, i believe we can do better in order to, you know, collectively share across minds, across worlds, in order to help this world, not just environment but more than that because there's so many things that are indirectly related to the earth, social issues and political issues and the historical issues and the war as well, so lets be loyal to each other and share some love.
  4. Zimbabwe - Sakhile Dube - #Sincerity
    I believe that the earth is our home and in order for us to always feel at home, we should adopt sincerity as one aspect in our lives.
  5. Colombia – Andrea Aguilera - #Integrity
    Integrity is one of the most important values that human being has to always respect. Integrity is to take care of ourselves, others and of course our mother earth. To put first the human rights in everything that is correct. Integrity should be the base of humanity and society and it will be the best way to go to a sustainable future and a better lifestyle.
  6. Belgium – Daphné Nivelles - #Honesty
    Well, I think that honesty is very important and we need to be honest with ourselves, honest with our environment, because the clock is ticking, not only for ourselves but also for our environment. That's why it's so important that we, not only as our earth sisters, and not only as our earth warriors, but we all together as a social community, fight for a healthier world.
  7. Puerto Rico - Paulina Avilés - #Trustworthy
    To me, being able to not only be trustworthy with the community thats around us but with those who are leading us to a better future is really key right now, especially from what we have been through this past few years so to me being able to create that trust between our communities and those that are in leadership places right is truly key to be able to evolve and have a better future, and that to me is the most important thing right now being trustworthy with one another.
  8. Netherlands -  Merel Hendriksen - #Dependable
    The earth that we all live on is dependable on us, so why do we treat it the way that we do? The fauna of our earth is dependable on us, so why do we treat it the way that we do? This is something that needs to stop. It needs to change. And the way that we can do that is that we unite our voices together, and not just one or the other but united and then we can make sure that the earth will be a better place. Based on the hashtag round, who do you think should have made the tpo 4 at the Miss Earth 2022 Finale? Let us know in the comments and we will be back, with the final parft in this series - The top 4 & the crowning!


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Miss Earth 2022 - Overview (Part 1)

The pandemic hit the entire world and left us all shook, nothing was left the same, not even the world of pageantry. We saw every big pageant coming to a halt, as the fear of covid19 prevailed in the land of pageants all across the globe. But one pageant that seemed to have continued its annual celebration year after year, even when the world was struck by a deadly global pandemic, was of course, the Miss Earth pageant. The organisers of Miss Earth opted for the new normal approach for their pageant for the 2020 and the 2021 editions when the pageant went virtual. All rounds, including the swimsuit, national costume and the evening gown rounds were pre-recorded and all the interviews and speech rounds were held over zoom calls. This digitalization of the pageant world gave us two of the most iconic and inspirational queens - Miss Earth 2020 - Lindsey Marie Coffey and Miss Earth 2021 - Destiny Wagner. While the fans were thankful for the Miss Earth Organisation for still organising the competition for us when everyone else had opted out of it, we sure were dying to see the pageant go back to its normal functioning soon. This year, they decided to finally host the pageant on grounds, in the land of Miss Earth - The beautiful country of the Philippines.

After 2 years, we saw the pageant go back offline and fans were super thrilled to finally see their queens on stage. Like every year, the pre pageant activities were uploaded on Miss Earth’s official youtube channel for the fans to watch and enjoy.This started by first introducing us to the wonderful contestants of the competition from all across the world and was followed by the 6 pre pageant competitions, namely ;

  1. Fauna Outfit - Fans witnessed this competition at the platform of Miss Earth for the very first time when the delegates from all over the nations dressed up as an animal, whichever they desired to represent, and displayed their creativity through their outfit of choice. Some of the best presentations in this segment of the competition according to the fans are shown below.
  • Miss Thailand
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Miss World 2000 - Credibility Investigation - Addressing Miss Barbados 2000's Allegations

It took India 21 years to finally win the most coveted Miss Universe crown when in 2021, the 21 year old Harnaaz Kaur Sandhu of Chandigarh, Punjab won the title after defeating 79 other extremely gorgeous women from all over the world. 21 years is surely a very long wait but not longer than  Leilani’s oath of silence. For 22 years, the former Miss World contestant kept mum about her experience at Miss World 2000 and what she and her batchmates had to face during the competition.

Two weeks ago, on 27th October, The former Miss Barbados - Leilani McConne posted a video analysing the recent Miss USA controversy about the 2022 competition being rigged in favour of Miss Texas - R'Bonney Gabriel. She was reacting to the videos posted by the other contestants of the competition when she started drawing out similarities between the allegations made by MUSA’22 contestants and her own year at Miss World, leaving the entire pageant community furious.

Leilani is facing a lot of backlash for her statements from the fans of Miss World and the global icon - Priyanka Chopra. But fret not dear citizens of the Pageant World, because your pageant police have been on this case for a while now and here are the discoveries that we have made so far during the course of our investigations.

  • Allegation : Miss India was the only contestant allowed to wear a one-piece swimsuit along with a sarong.
    During the 14 minute long video, Leilani mentions how during the Miss World Priyanka Chopra requested the judges to allow her to wear a dress and use a sarong because she was using a toning cream on her legs and her skin was still ‘blotchy’ and she did not want to present herself in front of the judges like that. Leilani says that Priyanka was the only contestant allowed to do so by the judges.  We assumed that the word “dress” actually refers to wearing a one piece swimsuit here since no 'dresses' were seen through the swimsuit competition that year. However, on diving deep into the old photos and videos of the Miss World 2000 competition, we made a shocking discovery. The girls were flown to Maldives, just to shoot the swimsuit competition and then flown back to London for the rest of the competition. During the actual competition, PeeCee was in fact wearing a two piece blue bikini with a sarong wrapped around her hips. Girls that were ‘allowed’ to wear a one piece bikini were the contenders from Argentina, Brazil,Angola,Aruba, Russia, France, Bangladesh, Kazakhstan, Belarus, The Philippines, Hongkong, Finland, England, New Zealand, Trinidad and Tobago, Sri Lanka, Nigeria, Cyprus, Colombia, Lithuania and Venezuela. Talking about sarongs now, we see in the Miss World 2000 Swimsuit videos that Miss Belgium, Moldova,Nepal,Chinese Taipei, Korea, Ireland,Wales,Malaysia, Malta, Israel,Sweden, Japan,Trinidad and Tobago,Scotland, Zimbabwe, Northern Ireland, Gibraltar, Chile, Ecuador, South Africa, Peru, Lebanon, Madagascar, Honduras, USA, Panama and Spain wearing sarongs during their swimsuit round at the Maldives. So, bestie, we might have to deem this allegation as cap.


  • Conclusion : False Accusation.
    What’s also interesting is the fact that Miss T&T was allowed to wear both a one piece swimsuit along with a sarong, Miss New Zealand had worn two different swimsuits in the introduction video and Miss Estonia wore a net dress over her bikini during the swimsuit shoot.
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Meet Anne Jakkaphong Jukrajutatip - MUO's New Owner

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The month of October gave us some insane, high voltage pageant drama and we are ready to serve the boiling hot tea to our loyal pageant fanatics from all over the world. Be it the annual carnival of Miss Grand International or the romantic union of former Queens, October was definitely the month for Pageant Fans!

The crown for creating the biggest buzz however, is taken by the Veteran Alpha - Miss Universe! With a new owner, MUO is all set to welcome their fans into their New Era - The JKN Era! Tons and tons of promises have been made and it'll be exciting to see what the new MU team has to bring to the table. Earlier this year, pageant fans worldwide anticipated a change in ownership of the venture and many big names were considered as the potential MUO owners, including the JKN Group. 

On 26th October, Endeavour Group sold the licensing rights of the Miss Universe Organization to Thai Media Tycoon - Anne Jakkaphong Jukrajutatip, deeming all auction speculations as true. With the change in ownership, fans expect the Miss Universe Pageant to have a new set of rules and ideologies, but before we get into that, let's meet our new Owner - Anne Jakkaphong Jukrajutatip!

Anne is a Thai businesswoman and the CEO of the JKN Global Group - a leading content management and distribution company based in Samut Prakan, Thailand. She was born on 17th February 1979 to Thai based Chinese parents - as Andrew Jukrajutatip. As a four year old, Anne was admitted to an all boys school, making her feel uncomfortable and very out of place. Growing up, she was heavily bullied and sexually harassed by both her teachers and her classmates in school for her gender identity and being more feminine. She was stuck, juggling two different personalities at school and home. Her parents didn't accept her choice of gender, which is why she had to live the way a boy is expected to live in society.

She revealed in an interview that she'd often steal her mother's makeup and lock herself up in her room at night. She'd then look at herself in the mirror, dreaming to be the girl in the mirror someday. 

Anne could not identify herself as a woman until she turned sixteen and flew to Sydney to pursue her degree in International Relations. Her transition began around this time, when she grew out her hair, down to waist, wore more feminine attires and began using makeup to fully embrace the woman in her. However, when she returned back to her home country - Thailand, her decisions weren't accepted well by the society, and especially, her family. Her mother threatened to commit suicide and end her own life if Anne didn't return to being her son - Andrew. So Anne had to take a step back.

For the next 15 years, Anne lived as their son, managing her father’s business, until she could no longer hold it in. At the age of 36,having had enough, Anne decided to run away from her family and start living her life the way she wanted. She was anxious and paranoid about losing her family, her friends and her business relations because of her one life altering decision, but she wanted to be truthful to herself and her identity. She could no longer pretend to be someone she is not. She wanted to make her own identity, the one that really identified her individuality. She underwent ten reconstruction surgeries over the course of the next three years. Anne explained how the process was hard and “looking like a mummy for months” was very draining but it was all worth it in the end because she is now one hundred percent a woman.

Anne also went on to explain how her whole transition was never about sexuality or being gay, it was about her feeling trapped inside a wrong body. Her family is now a bit more accepting about her choices but she isn't very close to them and doesn’t spend too much time with them - “i wouldn’t want to scare them with my toy boys “ she joked while talking to the Times Of India.

She has since won several awards for both her business and her influence including a Woman of the Year Award by Content Asia in 2019, Influential Woman of the Year Award in Media Industry, and the Most Influential Person in the Thai Entertainment Industry 2022. Anne has also now created history by acquiring 100 percent ownership of the Endeavour Group, that holds the licensing rights to Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA pageants, making her the sole owner of the three of the world’s biggest pageants. She’s also the first woman and the first non - American personality to ever own Miss Universe. With Anne’s entry into the MU Team, we can expect some major revolutionary changes in the pageant’s eligibility criteria and overall evaluation process.

As we sit and admire her story, we must understand what power our dreams hold. Life continues whether you have what you want, or you don't. Until Next Time, Stay Tuned!

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