by Michell Spoden
Meet my guest for today’s chat, Ankita Arora, a 24-year old Indian student pursuing Pharmacy degree from the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia. She is the winner of Miss India Italy 2012.
Michell: Ankita, please tell our viewers what Miss India Italy is.
Ankita: Miss India Italy is a pageant for women of Indian origin between the ages of 17 and 27, who are resident, citizen, or born in Italy. It consists of four segments: Evening Gown, Indian Dress, Talent, and Question-Answer. The winner of Miss India Italy along with the winners of all the various national pageants from all over the world vie for the glamorous and prestigious title of Miss India Worldwide.
Michell: When did this sort of pageant start and who created it?
Ankita: The Miss India Worldwide pageant was founded by Mr. Dharmatma Saran in 1990. It is produced by the IFC, an organization established in 1974 and based in the New York City. The IFC selects distinguished local organizations in various parts of the world and authorize them to conduct national pageants in their respective countries. Miss India Italy is one of these organizations that affiliated to IFC in 2011 and the woman behind it is the National Director Maria Rindone. I really salute this woman who gave birth to this organization all alone. I hope this event grows and reaches out more hearts as this provides such an amicable platform for any individual to make a difference.
Michell: How did you decide to get involved with this pageant?
Ankita: To be honest, I never dreamed or ever thought of becoming a beauty queen. Everything just happened by chance. I came to know about this pageant surfing the internet and talked to my mom about it. Initially I wasn’t really interested in participating since I had my final exams that year and was scared of not being able to balance between my studies and preparations for the pageant. But my mom dad encouraged me and I finally registered for it. After that, I flew to India for two weeks for various preparations. I started with my talent, choosing the right music, taking dance lessons by a professional and finalizing the mixtape and choreography. My dedication and long hours of hard work payed off and I was crowned Miss India Italy. That was the most joyous and memorable moment of my life. After that I competed for the Miss India Worldwide title in Paramaribo, Suriname, and won the subtitle of Miss Beautiful Hair.
This pageant has been a successful journey in which I learnt a lot, made friends and was able to represent the Indian in me while proudly being an Italian. I realized that an event as such, could crave your personality, while achieving a study – life balance.
Michell: Since you were Miss India Italy in 2012, do you now help mentor other females that enter into that pageant?
Ankita: Yeah I do help them improve their self- esteem, boost their confidence and focus on bringing out the best in each of them. Besides this, I give them various advices regarding a perfect walk down the runway, a great talent performance and a flawless stage presence.
Michell: Did you grow up in Italy and do you currently reside there? What is it like?
Ankita: Yes, I have been living here for the last 10 years. I was born in India and moved to Italy at the age of 12. It’s a fantabulous country with rich and magnificent art and architecture. People are very hospitable who know how to live life to the fullest.
Michell: I noticed that that you are going to be the brand ambassador for Ethnic Media. Please tell us about that.
Ankita: It’s an Australian media outfit which also supports Miss India Italy. The news was rather a shock but a happy surprise as now while a new queen came into my place, I have a vehicle to move on in future and continue in my quest to being a difference and being a role model to all those I have inspired. I was chosen by the EM360 board over 13 other eligible candidates including Bollywood stars and Prolific sports personalities.
Ethnic Media needed someone who is versatile yet culturally orientated having the international authenticity as well. I come from a Hindu background and have been raised in Italy. This unique culmination with the essence of cultural heritage was the perfect blend that EM360 was targeting. I was chosen for my mannerism and public interaction.
Em360 is trying to create a link with the current youth of the day and planning to grow along with them over the years to come.
Being a former Miss India Italy and having been in two films as well along the way, I was looked upon as the face for Ethnic Media 360 during international global appearances on behalf of EM360.
Apart from Ethnic Media 360, I also represent RADIO 360 and in the near future 360TV Products of Ethnic Media.
Michell: Are you involved in any humanitarian efforts?
Ankita: I am going to be a Red Cross volunteer very soon; I am still under training. I’ve always wanted to be a Red Cross volunteer so I am very excited at the prospect.
Michell: If you could describe yourself in one sentence what would it be?
Ankita: I am an ambitious, young, passionate girl who is instilled with strong values about my heritage, culture, and background.
Michell: What do you like to do in your personal time when you are not in the spotlight?
Ankita: As I mentioned before that I am a student, so I spend most of my time studying. When I am free, I love shopping, hanging out with friends and spending time with my family.
Michell: What is the best advice you could give females who want to compete in pageants?
Ankita: Let me just start by saying that it is very competitive. Pageants are a lot more demanding than they may seem: you need to put a lot of your time and your whole heart into it. If you think you are “Beauty with brains” and can carry yourself with grace, elegance and confidence, then go for it.
One more advice: Don’t be overconfident, just be yourself and give your 100% without thinking of the results.
Michell: Thank you Ankita!
Follow Ankita on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ankita-Arora-Miss-India-Italy/339665672726874
About the Author
Michell Spoden is the author of Stricken Yet Crowned and is also pursuing a transitional housing project for woman with an agricultural aspect. She has a degree in Business Science Administration and is finishing her bachelor’s in Project Management.