21-year-old Tenzin Paldon is crowned Miss Tibet, 2017 at the 15th annual beauty pageant held in Dharamsala. The pageant carried nine participants, none of whom has ever visited Tibet before. They are the members of the 100,000-strong Tibetan community that was established in India in 1960 following Dalai Lama’s exile into the country. The most amazing thing about the pageant is that the nine contestants are from India, United States and Europe.
Tenzin Paldon beauty of North East became successful at very young age. Apart from the modelling, Paldon is a member of the cabin crew with Spice Jet Airlines and graduated from the Frank-Finn Institute with a degree in aviation management. The contest had zero sponsors and was managed by Exile-Government of Tibet. Judges and participants are hard to find for this pageant, more often than not, gets ensnared in controversy like objections from conservative Tibetan members and feminist complaining on moral grounds.
An elated Paldon, who also won Miss Photogenic title, expressed gratitude to the organisers and audience for her victory. “I was expecting Tenzin Khechoe to win, but right now we are both winners,” said Paldon after being crowned. “I will use Miss Tibet to inspire the younger generations in every way possible. The title will also be immensely helpful in my modelling career. The modelling agency has already come forward with more offers,” she added.
This year’s pageant was attended by over 3,000 people, the organisers said. The grand finale was held on June 4 with four rounds – introduction, gown, traditional costume, and interview. The winner got a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh while the first and runners-up were given Rs 50,000 and Rs 25,000 respectively.