Sonam Choedon is Miss Tibet 2008

Miss Tibet 2008 Sonam Choedon

Miss Tibet 2008 Sonam Choedon

Sonam Choedon was crowned the new Miss Tibet last night at the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts in McLeod Ganj, Dharamshala, India.

Former Miss Tibet Tenzin Dolma passed on the crown to the new Miss Tibet amid fireworks, showers of confetti, and a huge applauding crowd.

Choedon was awarded 100,000 rupees to further her education and skills.

"Miss Tibet is a great platform to talk about Tibet. I will do my best to do that," says Choedon moments after crowning.

Jamyang Chentso, the only other contestant, was the runner-up, and was presented with a 50,000-rupee cheque.

Dr Rashmi Ramoul, a lecturer at the Government College for Teachers' Education, and Natasha Mendes from Brasil, a belly-dance teacher, adjudged the winner.

To a judge's query in the interview round about the relevance of Gandhi to the Tibetan people, Choedon said, "Gandhi is the most important freedom fighter of India. He fought with non-violence. His Holiness the Dalai Lama is following his path and pursuing the Middle-way approach to resolve the Tibetan issue."

However, she said that she has not studied about Gandhi in Tibet as it is not taught in schools. "I am speaking from the brief knowledge I have gained and heard after coming into exile."

Sonam Choedon was born in 1990 in Lithang, Kham, eastern Tibet. She is a student, has studied up to class 8 in Tibet. She is fluent in Chinese as well as Tibetan.

She came into exile in India in June 2008 in search of better opportunities for education. Her hobbies include dancing, reading and studying languages.

In the future she would like to become a dance teacher and also work on languages. She would also like to use her life and strength to help others in need as people have done for her when she first arrived in India.

There is a shortage of funds to cover the cost of the pageant and the prize money to the winner and runner-up. If you would like to contribute, you may donate through the PayPal button in the right column or contact us for more information.

Miss Tibet 2009 will be held in May-June 2009 and the application will be up on this site at the beginning of December.

N.B. Sonam Choedon's year of birth was mistakenly announced as 1983. She was born in 1990. So, she is 18 years of age. And, also she came into exile in India in June 2008, not December 2007. The mistakes are greatly regretted.

Lobsang Wangyal

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