Miss India at Miss World

Indian Delegates to the Miss World Pageant



Aishwarya Rai, Miss World 1994

Also Check Out:
Miss India-Universe Winners

Miss India-International Winners

Miss India-Asia Pacific/Earth Winners

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Priyanka Chopra, Miss World 2000

How did these women fare at the international rounds? Check it out at Indian Pageant Success

For Contributions: I would like to thank pageant historian Donald West and Persis Khambhatta for helping to put together this detailed information
This information is exclusive to this pageant...no unauthorized copying permitted

The Sixties

Reita Faria, crowned Miss World on November 17th, 1966 at the Lyceum Theatre

Reita pursued her medical studies with no care for the glamour world

Now as Dr. Reita Faria Powell of Dublin, Ireland, she attends the 50th anniversery of Miss World


1959: Fleur Ezekiel - elected by Eve's Weekly; First Indian delegate to Miss World.

1960: Iona Pinto - elected by Eve's Weekly; First Runner-Up in Miss International 1960 (The inaugral edition)

1961: Veronica Torcato - elected by Eve's Weekly

1962: Ferial Karim - elected by Eve's Weekly

1966: Reita Faria, MISS WORLD - A simple, very bright and serious medical student, Reita entered Miss Bombay on a whim, and walked away with both the Miss India and Miss World titles with her natural looks, charisma and wit. Despite a hectic years as Miss World, she wanted nothing more than to return to her studies, quietly, and spurn offers of fame and fortune...which was not an easy situation with the press. She met David Powell, a fellow student, who took a protective arm over her. The two went for postgraduate studies at Harvard University and moved to Dublin, Ireland, where Reita practiced medicine and David was a Professor of Medicine. They have two daughters in the medical field, Ann Marie and Deirdrie.

1967: No Delegate Sent

1968: Jane Coelho

1969: Adina Shellim


The Seventies

1972: Malathi Basappa (Coorg)

1974: Anjana Sood

1976: Naina Balsaver

1977: Veena Prakash

1978: Kalpana Iyer


1970: Heather Faville - She was elected Bharat Sundari 1970

1971: Prema Narayan - Featured in over 100 films in five languages, a very big star of the 1970's. She is married to a lawyer and has two sons.

1972: Malathi Basappa - She was a well-accomplished political science student, Bharat Natyam dancer and athlete. Today she is in her second marriage, with one son from the first. She lives in London and works for a tapestry firm.

1973: No Delegate Sent

1974: Kiran Dholakia - Turned out of her house at age 16, she worked as a hostess in five-star hotels to survive, and now is the assistant manager of a Montral-based Indian restaurant.

1975: Anjana Sood (Bharat Sundari 1974) - Considered amog the top 5 contenders for the Miss World title, Anjana made her desire to lose well-known. She went home and married her husband, and lived in an Orthodox Pahari community. She eventually ended her misery by starting a career in designing clothing and painting. She now has a boutique and one son, and her exhibitions have been very successful.

1976: Naina Balsaver (Ahmed) - The only Indian to represent India in both Miss Universe and Miss World, where she was withdrawn by PM Indira Gandhi over the issue of two South African's. She gained a lot of publicity for the act, and 30 countries followed. Her second marriage was to a politician, and she has four children in all. She first opened a beauty parlor, then did a bit of modelling, did some work on television, and then started a resort in a wildlife reserve. She ran for parliament in the last elections.

1977: Veena Prakash - Withdrawn out of protest for second year, with 14 countries following. She works in public relations for a high-profile investment banking firm in America, but hopes to get involved in the fashion business.

1978: Kalpana Iyer - She became the well-known vamp of Indian cinema in the eighties, not really as an actress, but in dance numbers, which popped up endlessly in numerous films.

1979: Raina Winifred Mendonica - Professional Model


The Eighties

1984: Suchita Kumar (Mumbai)

1985: Sharon Clarke (Mumbai)

1986: Maureen Lestourgen (Hyderabad)

1987: Manisha Kohli (Mumbai)


1980: Elizabeth Anita Reddi - Professional Model

1981: Deepti Divakar

1982: Uttara Mhatre - Professional Model

1983: Sweety Grewal - Professional Model

1984: Suchita Kumar, Mumbai
A very simple and nonchalant competitor, Suchita Kumar first won the Bombay Princess crown in 1981 (Her sister Ruchita won Miss India that year). Having done a slight bit of modelling, her life was shattered with the death of her father. With almost no help, a borrowed sari and some costume jewellery, Suchita walked away with the right to attend Miss World. After that, her fashion modelling career took her to Dubai, where she met her husband and had two daughters. She is the brand manager for a make-up and skin care company there.

1985: Sharon Clarke, Mumbai
A science student, she went on to modelling, but feeling spiritually empty, ashe now lectures for the anatan Bhartiya Sanskriti Samstha.

1986: Maureen Lestourgen, Hyderabad
Winning Navy Queen in 1979 and finishing as runner-up in Miss Asia-Pacific, this traditional girl from Hyderabad was quite scared in the glamour scene. She started out as a British Airways flight attendant (The reason she came to Mumbai). After her modelling career gradually wore out, she got married and started her own herbal remedies business.

1987: Manisha Kohli, Mumbai
The youngest of the Miss India contestants, she managed to shoot her first film entirely on vacation from school and did her first shampoo ad on the same day as the Miss India pageant. Trained in Kathakali, she recieved impressive 85% marks, and after a cherished experience at Miss World, she graduated with honors in management studies, at the top of her university. To the shock of her parents, she decided to work with British Airways, one of 7 girls chosen out of 7,000. Her photographs have appeared in many British magazines and she is completing her Masters in management studies at Oxford, while still learning classical dance.

1988: Anuradha Kottoor - details unknown

1989: No representative to Miss World was sent to Hong Kong


The Nineties

1990: Naveeda Mehdi (Mumbai)

1991: Ritu Singh (Delhi)

1992: Shyla Lopez (Bangalore)

1993: Karminder Kaur (Chandigarh)


1990: Naveeda Mehdi
Having grown up in a village in the south, Naveeda never let her traditional upbringing affect her goals. At school, she was voted Best All-Round student, and was considered the best actress, house captain and won the Intermediate sports champaionship trophy. She loved debating and adventure sports. She joined a 3D computer animaton course, modelling and St. Xavier's College. Today, she is working in tv, film and modelling still.

1991: Ritu Singh, Delhi
The daughter of an army father, she first planned to become a doctor, but then entrolled in a fashion design school. As a Miss India, she became first runner-up in Miss India-Universe (Now Miss India-Worldwide), ended up in the finals of Miss World and then became Second Runner-Up in Miss Asia World. After modelling, her knight in shining armour came along, and she now is married and living in Nepal, with her own boutique. She directs a pageant there.

1992: Shyla Lopez, Bangalore
Originally working at a hospital, she has managed to stay strong in the modelling industry to this day! She says that she enjoys keeping down to earth.

1993: Karminder Kaur, Chandigarh
A national basketball player and a BA student, she was a dark horse who jumped into modelling as a Miss India. She won the national costume prize in South Africa, but was more successful when she was crowned "Miss India Worldwide." She spent some time working in a few different tv serals, but eventually married. She is now Mrs. Virk, and living in Australia.


1994: Aishwarya Rai (Mangalore)

1995: Preeti Makotia (Delhi)

1996: Rani Jeyaraj (Bangalore)

1997: Diana Hayden (Hyderabad)


1994: Aishwarya Rai, MISS WORLD, Mangalore
The daughter of a merchant navy officer, Aishwarya was born in the south Indian city of Mangalore into a traditional Hindu family. Aishwarya is trained in classical dance, and was once an architecture student at Jai Hind College, Mumbai. With a long and steady modelling career, she opted to go into films, and eventually became a success, the star face of India in 1999, with hits such as "Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam" and "Taal," and a somewhat successful "Aa Ab Laut Chalen". As part of a promotion for an eye bank, Aishwarya promised to donate her beautiful green eyes! In 2000 and 2001, she released average-success movies such as "Josh" and "Hum Aapke Paas Hai." 2002 looks to be more successful with the release of the much-hyped "Devdas"

1995: Preeti Mankotia, Delhi
The daughter of an army colonel, Preeti was undergoing normal college studies when she won, and is now has a lucrative modelling career.

1996: Rani Jeyaraj, Bangalore
The daughter of a pastor, Rani grew up in Zambia. She played host to the 88 contestants in her hometown during Miss World 1996, but only ended in the top five. She hoped to have her own talk show, but prospects failed. She became sick of the modelling industry and left. She spent some time working in IT and handled the promotion for another company. She is now going to star in a silent television serial.

1997: Diana Hayden, MISS WORLD, Hyderabad
This dusky Anglo-Indian beauty from Hyderabad moved to Mumbai with her mother at a young age. She started out by working for Encore, an event management company. She dabbled in modelling, but not for long, because she went to work for the entertainment group BMG Crescendo, and helped to establish the careers of upcoming artistes. As Miss World, she travelled far and wide, and this started her career as the "Because I'm Worth It" girl for L'oreal, along with big names such as Claudia Schiffer, Vanessa Williams and Kate Moss. Her print and broadcast ads were seen across the world. In the meantime, she studied acting at the Royal Academy of Dramatics Arts in London, and was launched in two projects - One is an Asian-British venture, another is a South African drama. This beauty has a heart, as she is still very active in charity work. She definitely loves pageantry too, now as a special guest or judge in so many of them.


1998: Annie Thomas (New Delhi)

1999: Yukta Mookhey (Mulund)

2000: Priyanka Mini Chopra (Bareilly)

2001: Sara Corner (Bangalore)


1998: Annie Thomas, New Delhi
The daughter of a professional skydiver and a military-based father, Keralite Annie was a popular face in modelling after entering the Miss India contest in 1996 and going unplaced. She refused film offers, and instead starred in her own serial Kwaish, where she played a struggling supermodel. Despite rave reviews about her performance, the series went off air due to poor ratings within 26 episodes. She started an events and entertainment company, and in the meantime she is married with one child. Poise Events and Entertainment has a site at (http://www.poiseworld.com/)

1999: Yukta Mookhey, MISS WORLD, Mulund
The daughter of a clothing company director and a salon manager, Punjabi lady Yukta is a suburban girl, and pursued Zoology studies at Kelkar College, winning accolades in many fields. Although she intended a career in mass communications or computer graphics, she went on to be crowned Miss World at Olympia Theatre in London (Held partially in Malta). Formerly a Zoology student and model, Yukta has signed a few films, such as Pyaasa with Aftab, a reality film with Namrata and Dino Morea, and another film with Zulfi Syed, among others. Her film career debuted with "Pyaasa" opposite 2 former Manhunt winners, but the movie was a complete failure.

2000: Priyanka Mini Chopra, MISS WORLD, Bareilly
The daughter of a doctor and an army surgeon, Punjabi gal Priyanka has studied in Boston and New York City and was pursuing studies in either software engineering or criminal psychology. After winning the Miss World crown at the Millenium Dome (Held partially in the Maldives), she signed films. They include: Hero with Sunny Deol, Gandhi again with Sunny Deol, Hum Bhi Kush, Tum Bhi Kush with Anil Kapoor, Asar with Ajay Devgan, Ek Haseena Ek Deewana with Govinda

2001: Sara Corner, Bangalore
The daughter of stage actress Priscilla Corner and a professional jockey, Sara is an ex-Miss Bangalore, a well-known city model, a state level runner and is pursuing graduate studies with a dream to start a travel agency or airline. Her Asian looks are based on Irish blood somewhere along the line. Sara competed in Sun City, South Africa but failed to make the final ten, despite being a heavy favorite. Modelling jobs come in sparingly after her year was up, but she also teaches modelling to eager wannabe's. Rumor has it she is pursuing travel and tourism courses in order to start a travel agency. She was married after handing over her crown.


2002: Shruti Sharma (Mumbai)

2002: Shruti Sharma, Mumbai
Born to a Pundit businessman and housewife in Mussourie, Shruti went with her family to Delhi, where she graduated with a degree in sociology. however, ambition in modelling brang her to Mumbai, where she walked the ramp and appeared in advertisements. After an unsuccessful run in the 2001 pageant (Not even placing in the final 15), she tried again, and managed to make the top twenty at Miss World. After relinquishing her crown, Shruti is intending to enter the film industry, now enrolling in acting classes. At the same time, she continues to model on the ramp, her offbeat look providing an advantage.
2003: Ami Vashi(Los Angeles)
2003: Ami Vashi, Los Angeles and Mumbai
Ami, the daughter of Gujarati real estate tycoons, was born in Surat but shifted to California in the states so her parents could pursue their business. Calling Los Angeles home, she graduated from the University of Southern California with a Degree in Dinance and took up a position with a Non-Governmental Organization, working as a financial analyst. She wants to eventually begin a non-profit organization which provides equal educational opportunities, but her current work has been dealing with issues of third-world women.

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