By Lobsang Tenchoe
DHARAMSALA, Oct 6: Director of Miss Himalaya event, Lobsang Wangyal officially presented this year’s contestants at a press conference held today at his studio at Jogiwara road in Mcleod Ganj, Dharamsala.
The 5th edition of Miss Himalaya Pageant has a record nine contestants, the maximum number of contestants since the pageant started.
“It’s history in the making. We have nine contestants in this year’s Miss Himalaya Pageant. It is by far the biggest number of contestants in the five years of the Pageant,” Director of the event, Lobsang Wangyal said as he presented the contestants to the media.
The contestants are Aaisha Gurung, 25, from Chamba; Akansha Mahat, 19, from Dharamshala; Kalzang Butith, 22, from Kaza; Mannat Thakur, 18, from Nahan; Monika Negi, 20, from Rampur Bushahr; Palak Thakur, 17, from Palampur; Preksha Rana, 21, from Gaggal; Simran Mehta, 20, from Dharamshala and Tashi Lhamo, 24, from Kathmandu.
The two-day competition from October 7-8 include ‘Talk and Talent Rounds’ scheduled on the night of October 7 at the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA) and the remaining three rounds will be held at the same venue on the Finale night on October 8.
“The Pageant provides more opportunities for fostering friendship and understanding among the Himalayan people. We have the support of Honourable Minister for Urban Development, Government of Himachal Pradesh, Shri Sudhir Sharma. The Himachal Tourism is supporting the Pageant with some funding assistance as well,” Lobsang Wangyal concluded.
A prize money of rupees one lakh and the Miss Himalaya crown will be awarded to the winner and the first and second runners up will get a prize money of rupees fifty thousand and twenty-five thousand respectively.
“Tibet is a vital part of the Himalayan region; therefore, I took part in the pageant. Tibetan girls should not get swayed away by the fame and spot light that goes hand in glove with the pageant. Instead, it should be used to benefit and help others,” said Tashi Lhamo, the lone Tibetan contestant.