Nagpur’s very own, Tanaya Bowade was crowned as the first runner-up at the recently held Ms. India Pacific 2019 at the Sahara Star in Mumbai. She also bagged the sub-title of Ms. Beautiful Face amongst 30 contestants. A, fourth year Engineering Student, Tanaya, wants to utilize her win for the betterment of underprivileged girls and society at large and this winner looks extremely focused.
Excerpts from our interview with Tanaya:
- Were you sure of your victory or did it happen out of the blue?
I was very confident of myself since, I had done a lot of research and preparation before I had planned to enrol myself for the pageant. I had spent 2 exhaustive months training for the competition, which included the right kind of workout routine to get the right body. I worked hard on my makeover; which included the beauty aspect along with getting the technical things right like, catwalk and your presentation ability.
- Did you expect to be chosen as the best by the organizers and the judges?
No. There was a lot of competition. Every contestant had their own strengths and weaknesses. I was overwhelmed and very stressed out the first day but I collected myself and spoke to my parents who assured me of my capabilities. Such conversations with them calmed me down and helped me focus on my goal.
- Who do you think was your biggest competitor?
I was my biggest competitor. My biggest challenge was to overcome my own fears and shortcomings.
- How were you as a child? Did you always aspire to be a beauty queen?
Yes, I always wanted to be a beauty queen. I was always enamored by the magazines, the gorgeous models and how amazingly they could pull off a certain outfit. I used to wonder how brilliantly they could pose for a magazine cover.
- How long have you held on to the dream of winning a beauty pageant or did it happen by accident?
The moment I landed in Mumbai as a student, I felt and realized that this city is a city of opportunities. I wanted to make the best use of my talent and abilities and I knew for a fact that this city has a lot to offer. It was my dream to enter into a beauty pageant and by God’s grace I have achieved my dream.
- Do you remember, who was the first one to wish you after you were crowned?
My coach and mentor Ms. Simran Vig was the first one, followed by my mom.
- How did you become interested in pageants?
Pageants are platform that not only looks for models but for role models. Wining a pageant provides you with name, fame and recognition and you can use this for a better cause and to make a difference in this world.
- Were you always very confident of yourself? If yes, was the environment around you always very encouraging? And if not, what factors and what helped you gain that confidence?
I was not very confident when I started my journey. My mentor helped me find and build that confidence in myself. She helped me bring out the positivity in myself, which in turn reflected in my personality and how I carried myself on stage and otherwise. Even my family and friends from Nagpur witnessed this change and they couldn’t be happier for me. It is so important to have the right kind of guru and coach in your life, who not only helps you find that positivity in you but also helps you change for the better- be it your thought process, your speaking ability or your lifestyle.
- How do you define yourself? Did the pageant preparation help you with working on your personality?
I define myself as a combination of beauty and brains. I believe, “A witty woman is a Treasure and a Witty Beauty is a Power”. Looks can be people’s magnet but brain is what sustains that magnet firmly in place. Beauty might give you that instant recognition but brain is what will take you further in life.
- Were you consistent throughout the competition?
Yes, I was. I made sure I was consistent and consistently focused when it came to adhering to the 3 Bs around which the competition revolved; Body, Beauty, and Brains. I strived every single day to be focused with my eating schedule. I practice yoga and it has helped me stay calm, composed and focused on the things I want to achieve in my life. Discipline is the key and having a disciplined life is what will take you closer to your life goals and ambitions.
- How did you prepare for the interviews that were held during the course of the pageant?
I kept myself abreast with the current affairs and happenings around the world and in our country. I used to read newspapers, take notes and kept myself informed. I watched a lot of interviews of the previous contestants and beauty queens. I learnt a lot from those interviews, right from how to conduct myself to how to answer the questions.
- What are the “must-haves” of being a contestant?
Confidence, discipline, and belief in oneself are the definite must haves. Discipline is a bridge between your goals and accomplishments. I also believe that discipline is a vehicle and success is the journey. Self-discipline is extremely important to achieve anything in life and we all must strive to inculcate that.
- How would winning the title help you in your future prospects?
Winning this title has given me a social recognition which will help me further my cause with my NGO, Manaswini, which works for the under privileged girls in Nagpur. I’ve been getting messages on my social media from a lot of my school and college friends who want to join my NGO and work for the upliftment of these girls. Professionally, I am now very confident of my abilities and I would love to work in media, advertising and fashion industry. This title has given me a platform with which I can benefit the society and I plan to continue that whole heartedly. I would also love to participate in the international pageants and represent India at a global level.
- How is life like after winning the crown and how will it be after you pass on the crown to the next winner?
My life totally changed after my win. People recognize me for my accomplishments. I am the face of Nagpur and Mumbai. But I also know that with fame and recognition, comes a lot of responsibility and I make sure that I don’t forget it. It’s imperative to maintain dignity and I know people respect me for that. Even my college mates and my school mates have tremendous respect for me. And after I pass on the crown, life will go on and I am confident that I will achieve more.
- Has winning the crown made you a better human being?
I have learnt a lot in these past few months. I have met some amazing people who have inspired me in a lot of ways. Even my co-contestants helped me do better. It was a competition, but we still used to help each other during the entire process. Girls used to take care of each other and we were each other’s support system too. Winning has taught me to be emotionally strong and also how not to get into bad competition.
- What is your message for the Nagpur girls?
I would tell all the girls of Nagpur to “believe in the beauty of your dreams, believe in yourself and take the effort to achieve your dreams and go for it”.