Thursday, May 7, 2009

I want to win Miss World for India: Pooja

She’s a beauty with brains. Pantaloons Femina Miss India World 2009, Pooja Chopra is also a woman brimming with confidence.

A self-confessed foodie who is ‘genetically blessed’, Pooja does not believe in jumping the bandwagon when it comes to taking decisions in life. Exclusive excerpts from an interview.

You must be working really hard for the upcoming Miss World pageant?
On my end, the preparations have begun. But the focus now is totally on Ekta, as she has just two months left for the Miss Universe pageant. As for me, I’m working on my shoots and completing all commitments. After I won the Miss India crown, I binged so much, that now I’m back to the gym with a vengeance. Since the pageant will be held in South Africa, I’m reading up on the country and trying to keep myself abreast with all the happenings in the world.

A number of Indian beauties have worn the Miss World crown. Do you feel pressurised in anyway?
As they say, uneasy lies the head that wears the crown. I’m inspired by the success stories of our past winners. When I entered Miss India, I wanted to win for my mother, who has been through a lot in life. I wanted to win for myself. Now that I have to compete at Miss World, I want to win it for India. And I’m sure people will pray for me.

The Miss USA pageant was rocked by controversy, when Miss California spoke against gay marriages...
I feel sorry for Carrie Prejean (Miss California). She spoke her heart without keeping in mind the larger picture. You cannot hurt the sentiments of a certain section of society when you are expected to represent them on the world stage. Everyone has the right to make a choice and we should respect that. If she really had to speak her mind, she should have put it in a more subtle way, without hurting anyone.

Is it important to be politically correct?
When you are given the responsibility of representing an entire nation, you should be careful not to hurt people. I have totally understood the seriousness of representing a country like India. Whatever I do or say will not just affect me, but the entire nation. So, I have to be extra careful.

Miss Australia too is creating a controversy after being criticised for being too skinny. People say models encourage young girls to go on diets and be unhealthy.
Everybody has a mind of his/her own. I think it’s up to an individual to decide what’s good or bad and not be influenced by others. Thankfully, I’m genetically blessed and don’t put on weight.

Any Bollywood dreams?
The pageant will decide my fate. I’m like a horse with blinkers. I set small -term goals for myself and take things one at a time. Right now, my focus is on the pageant. After that, I’ll decide what to do.

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