The four contestants of Spice India Splendour Miss Tibet Pageant 2009 posing during the swimsuit round at the Asia Health Resorts.
MCLEOD GANJ, India, 5 June 2009 —
The first round of the Spice India Splendour Miss Tibet Pageant 2009 started with the swimsuit round.
A three-member jury adjudged the contestants on their figure, skin, posture and poise. The judges were — Neelima Kanwar, a lecturer at the Himachal Pradesh University; Ram Swaroop, former president of the Indo-Tibetan Friendship Association; and, Natasha Mendes, a belly dance instructor from Brasil.
Representatives from Spice and India Splendour — Dr.Bhishm Agnihotri (former Indian ambassador to the US) and Ms Vidya Chhabar (Manager Spice India) also attended the event.
Despite criticisms from some corners of conservative Tibetan society, the organisers of the pageant continue to keep the swimsuit round.
"If the Tibetan society needs to adapt with the culture and reality of present day world, it is most essential that such events are held. I will continue doing what I do," said, Lobsang Wangyal, Director of Spice India Splendour Miss Tibet Pageant 2009.
Expressing how they felt after the first round, Ngawang Choying said, "I was a bit nervous while preparing for this round, but as I went through the preparation, I started to gain more and more confidence. I believe I have put my best effort and I hope that we all did a fine job."
Tenzin Choezom expressed her feelings in these words, "I didn't actually believe that I would be able to go through it, and yet my confidence grew once I was out there. I was proud to represent Tibetan women at this wonderful platform."
"My initial nervousness was overwhelmed by the fact that I needed to put my best in this competition. I could have done better but I am happy that I was able to complete this round. I am looking forward to the next round," said Yeshi Lhamo.
"A lot of positive and Negative things are said about the swimsuit round in our community. I believe it's a wonderful platform for a Tibetan women and I was proud to represent one. I am glad that I am a part of this pageant with a greater cause," said Dolkar.
The one week of training
Click here for the profile of the contestants