By Tenzin Dharpo
Phayul Photo: Tenzin Monlam
DHARAMSHALA, June 6: The TIPA ground near McLeod Ganj hosting the 2016 edition of the coveted Miss Tibet pageant’s main event yesterday was swallowed up in a celebratory air with more than three thousand people cheering and singing throughout the proceedings.
Following the three days of talent round and swim suit round, the business end of the pageant culminated yesterday evening with the customary schedule of introduction round, gown round, the traditional costume round and finally the interview round. Tenzing Sangnyi who had earlier this year participated in the Miss Himalaya pageant was declared the winner and crowned Miss Tibet 2016 by last year’s winner Pema Choedon.
21 year old Sangnyi told journalists after winning, “I am very happy and overwhelmed to be crowned the winner. I thank Jetsun Dolma (Tibetan protective deity). This platform gives me a voice and now I can inspire people of all ages and walks of life to strive for their better selves and reach for goals. I will be able to amplify the Tibetan struggle on the global platforms by being a cultural ambassador and let the world know that Tibetans are fighting for their rights and will continue to fight.”
Being a nurse, Tenzin said she will sensitize and spread awareness on the deteriorating HIV scenario inside Tibet to youngsters and older generations alike.
The organizer of the event, Lobsang Wangyal speaking to Phayul mentioned, “I am completely satisfied, it went accordingly as I planned. A lot of positive feedbacks from the people and the icing on the cake was meeting with His Holiness the Dalai Lama.”
Speaking on Miss Tibet event as a brand in the exile community, he said, “The event is more than a brand I believe, it is a part and parcel of the community and people look forward to this day in the Tibetan exile calendar”.
The pageant this year saw an increase in the number of contestants compared to the last few years with four girls; Tenzin Dawa from New York (runners up), Dechen Wangmo from Mussoorie, Tenzing Dickey from Bylakuppe and Tenzing Sangnyi from Manali.
The pageant which drew ire from some sections of the Tibetan society earlier arguing the western ways (swim suit round) could go against the Tibetan tradition and custom had seen Tibetan girls come forward to take part in the yearly event as a necessary way forward to engage Tibetan women, in reinventing their status quo and also to bring Tibet on to the global foray.