Shenila Daredia and Honey Chawla Crowned at Beauty Pageant
(Photos by Vinod)
It was a dazzling extravaganza as Shenila Daredia was crowned Miss India Georgia 2012 and Honey Chawla, Miss Teen India Georgia 2012, at a five-hour event at the Gwinnett Center for the Performing Arts, Duluth, on August 4, 2012.
Eighteen-year-old Shenila Daredia was overwhelmed with joy as Miss India Georgia 2010, Roopal Patel, and Mrs. Adrita Khanna, Director and 2008 winner of Mrs. India International, walked on the stage to crown her as winner. Shenila graduated from Woodward Academy this May and will join in Business Administration at the King’s College in New York City this fall.
Honey Chawla, the new Miss Teen India Georgia 2012, and Shenila Daredia, Miss India Georgia 2012.
Rita Ray Chabra, 1st runner-up of Miss India Georgia 2012, aspires to go to medical school to become a physiatrist. Rita Ray has a firm belief that with enough planning and determination anything is possible. Meghana Melkote, 2nd runner-up is going to join an Industrial Design Program this fall at Georgia Institute of Technology. Meghana enjoys dancing, music of all genres, watching old Bollywood movies, and traveling around the world.
Sixteen-year-old Honey Chawla, the new Miss Teen India Georgia 2012, aspires to study Computer Science. First runner-up is 16-year-old Chini Sheth, an eleventh grader at Peachtree Ridge High School. She has a passion for dancing, which she has been doing for the last 12 years and aspires to be a pediatrician. Second runner-up Akshaya Vijaykumar is also 16 and a rising junior at Northview High School. She is passionate about singing and dancing.
The beauty pageant was a glittering event with 27 pretty and talented beauties sashaying on the stage in colorful Indian and western outfits, vying for the coveted titles, and trying their best to impress the judges with their talent, poise, and catwalk. Organized by iLink Professionals Inc. under the leadership of Salman (Sonny) Molu, the pageant was a sold-out show. Bollywood-style entertainment had dances on hit numbers like “Munni Badnam Hui” from Dabang, “Chikni Chameli” (Agneepath), and “Ooh La La Ooh La La” (Dirty Picture) by dancers of Prem Dance Studio and the group, Silent Killers Dance Mania. Dancers Prem Rehman and Shilpa Ailani Jadwani impressed with their versatile dancing and bhava techniques. Emcees were Anand Bhika and Anisa Daftari, who was also the Pageant Director.
The evening commenced with an opening dance number by the 27 contestants attired in black and white on Bollywood number “Aaj Ki Raat” from the movie Don, choreographed by Prem Rehman. All contestants then appeared both in Western gowns and Indian sarees and lehenga cholis.
When it all came down to the five final contestants of Miss Indian Georgia, there were the 3 above plus Shreya Singh and Teena Patel. The five finalists for Miss Teen India Georgia also included Simren Dhani and Mansi Patel.
In the Talent Round, tall and slim Meghana Melkote played drums and performed hip hop dancing on the music from the film Bhul Bhullaya. Shenila Daredia’s scintillating dance was an amalgamation of Garba, Bhangra, Indian Classical, Lavni, and Bollywood, depicting patriotic fervor on the song, “Saare Jahaan Se Accha, Hindustan Hamara.” Teena Patel did a contemporary dance number on the hit “Desi Boys,” and Rita Ray Chabra wowed with martial art techniques, which she has been learning from age 14.
From left to right: Second runner-up for Miss Teen India Georgia 2012, Akshaya Vijaykumar; First runner-up, Chini Sheth; and the winner, Honey Chawla.
Highlight of the evening was the Question/Answer Round. Replying to a question on success, Honey Chawla replied, “My definition of success is having a lot of confidence in yourself. As long as you have faith in yourself, you are successful.”
When the question was “Tell me the color of the soul and why you picture it that way,” pat replied Chini Sheth, “Blue is the color of inspiration and so is the color of my soul.” To the question, “What happening in the world today affects you the most?” Akshaya Vijaykumar replied that the maltreatment of the Muslims in Burma had been bothering her immensely. When Mansi Patel was asked if she would choose continuing education or joining Bollywood movies, she preferred education as she could have fame and fortune both that way.
In the round for Miss India Georgia, Teena Patel was asked, “What values from both cultures are important to you and what would you inculcate in your kids?” Teena mentioned a balance of both religions, adding that she was involved in multimedia and would encourage American culture, too. When a question came about inclusion of a South African disabled player competing in 4x400 meter relay in 2012 London Olympics, contestant Shreya Singh said, “It is very important that disabled people, too, are good like normal people. It is a great step.” To”Why do you think people are mesmerized by beautiful things, beautiful people, and beautiful nature?” Rita Ray Chabra replied, “When you have confidence, it doesn’t matter if your beauty comes from inside or outside.” When Meghana Melkote was asked about her personality, her answer was, “I am a person who loves to travel and loves wonders.” Shenila Daredia’s judge’s question was, “If given an option of Olympics in India or USA, where would you cheer and why?” Bubbly Shenila replied, “I would like Olympics to be held in USA, since then I would also be able to represent India in America.”
Mayuri Iyengar won Miss Congeniality, Shaba Momin was Miss Photogenic, Chini Sheth was Miss Beautiful Smile, Rishika Laliwala got Miss Prettiest Eyes, Miss Popularity went to Sonali Prabhu, and the Miss Best Talent title was bagged by Rita Ray Chabra.
Judges were Sucheta Kamath, Farah Hafeez, Movina Natrajan, Ravneet Bagga, Ajay Singadia, Raj Pandya, See Lo, Ross Rossin, and Sumeeta Patel Shetty. Judges of the Talent Preshow held on August 2 were Malaika Witter Hewitt, Priti Lakha, Michelle Simon, Shemoni Parekh, and Deepak Bakshi.
The theme of this year's contest was “Charity,” connected to “Inward Beauty” with the most beautiful thing in the world being to help charities achieve their goals. Girls from all over the state participated in this female empowerment program with activities such as personal styling workshops, public speaking seminars, interview training, makeup application lessons, and healthy lifestyle coaching with a personal dietician.
Winners go to a nationwide contest, receive a cash prize of over $1500 to winner and $800 to runner-up plus gifts from sponsors, an expert health and beauty package, and the ability to be a role model for all and a spokesperson for the Georgia Indian Community.
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Here are photos of the contestants with their names:
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