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Not just monuments, but the real life beauties and dashing guys too who earn us that moniker

Is it just a coincidence that the most beautiful people who get to wear sashes and walk away with the
tiaras and titles on international stages hail from the city? Even if they don’t belong here, they often attribute their success to it because there is bit of the city in them.
The recent win of Rohit Khandelwal as ‘Mr. World’ at Southport got me thinking on this. I understand that he beat 47 participants from around the world to bag this prestigious title and a prize of $50,000. I experienced the same euphoria when the girls won it too.
At the risk of sounding pompous, almost everyone who made news as a man or woman of substance has had a city connect. May I jog your memory to a good 22 years ago and trundle you back to 1994 when Sushmita Sen was crowned the Miss Universe. I remember how Sush, as she is better called, was softly declared as ‘mana Sushmita’ or ‘our Sushmita’. She was born here and almost every interview of hers brought glory to us. I met her a few months ago at a big fashion event at the Taj Falaknuma Palace and it was great to see her remember the city with fondness.
In the late 1990s and early 2000, it was Diana Hayden and then Dia Mirza, both of who have a strong bond to Hyderabad. Dia studied here and has always spoken about how the city gave her the attitude and mindset that has made her what she is today.
Then Miss India Universe 2011 Vasuki Sunkavalli had a slice of the Pearl City in her too. Call me biased, but when people remember their roots, it feels great. And when dashing guys and beautiful girls open their speech on the dais with a ‘’ I am.. and I come from the city of Hyderabad’ my heart swells with instant pride. Last week, there seemed to be a spate of beauty pageants in the city. While I always wish the best man/woman win the title, I secretly hope those who call Hyderabad their home should be a bit more equal than the others. It’s not for nothing that we are called a beautiful city or tiara town.

-Swapna Sundari

—  The writer is a popular TV show host, radio jockey, professional singer… and most importantly, a hardcore Hyderabadi)

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