Miss India 2013:Punjabi girl gets the crown

Mumbai: On Sunday night in India, all eyes were on contestants of Pond’s Femina Miss India.

In the end, Navneet Kaur Dhillon emerged victorious as Miss India 2013 in the Yash Raj Studios. Sobhita Dhulipala, a 20-year-old student in Mumbai, won first runner up and actress Zoya Afroz (18) from Lucknow in the state of Uttar Pradesh was awarded second runner up.

This year was the 50th anniversary of the competition, lending added weight to the title for Dhillon, the 20-year-old daughter of an army officer from Patiala in the state of Punjab and media student at Punjabi University. The limelight is not new for Dhillon, who also won the Femina Miss Glowing skin award. She will go on to represent India at the next Miss World contest – India has won international titles 34 times, second only to Venezuela.

Television actor Manish Paul hosted the event, which opened with a wistful audiovisual look at the event’s history. The event was judged by Karan Johar, John Abraham, Asin, Chitrangada Sing, Shiamak Davar, Ritu Kumar and Yuvraj Singh. Priyanka Chopra, Aishwarya Rai and Sonu Nigam crooned and performed for the crowd. And all 23 finalists, donning Bharatanatyam (classical Indian dance) costumes and ghagra-cholis, danced across the stage.