With Manushi Chhillar’s victory, India Equals Venezuela in Number of Miss World Titles

India and Venezuela have won the Miss World Title six times each.


With Manushi Chhillar’s victory at the Miss World pageant on Nov. 18, India reached at par with Venezuela, which was the only country until last year to have won six titles. Venezuela won its last title in 2011.

Chhillar, 20, got the Miss World title for India 17 years after actress Priyanka Chopra emerged winner. The top five contestants this time were England, France, Kenya and Mexico, apart from India. At least 118 countries participated in the pageant.

“And we have a successor!Congratulations @ManushiChhillar on becoming #MissWorld2017.. cherish and learn, and most importantly enjoy it.Bravo,” Chopra, who has starred in Baywatch and is the lead of TV show Quantico, tweeted on Nov. 18.

Chhillar is studying to become a doctor, and she wants to open non-profit hospitals in rural areas, according to the Miss World website. She is a trained classical dancer and likes to paint. She is also interested in marine sports and extreme activities like scuba diving, snorkeling and bungee jumping.

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan

Two of the most successful Miss Worlds from India have been Chopra and Aishwarya Rai, who won the title in 1994. Both of them became actresses in Bollywood after their win, beginning careers that have been vastly successful and earned them international fame.

However, not all the Miss World title holders from India went on to become successful in showbiz, even though they tried.

Yukta Mookhey won the Miss World crown in 1999. After an unsuccessful Bollywood career, she married Prince Tuli, a Nagpur-based businessman, in 2008.

Yukta Mookhey

Their marriage ended in 2014 when Mookhey filed an FIR against Tuli for domestic violence.

In 1997, Diana Hayden, who was born in an Anglo-Indian family in Hyderabad, became Miss World. She too attempted a career in acting but did not land any roles that would leave a lasting image except her stint at Bigg Boss Season 2. She studied Acting and Drama at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts, London, UK.

The first Indian to be crowned Miss World was Reita Faria in 1966. She was the 15th Miss World and the first Asian to win the pageant.

Reita Faria

Born to Goan parents in 1943, she was a model and a doctor. She has been married since 1971, and has two children.

After winning the Femina Miss World title, Chhillar told PTI, “My idol has always been Reita Faria. I have always admired her as a kid. She was the first Indian and Asian ever to win the title.The best part was that the moment she completed her reign as Miss World, she immediately went back to what she was passionate about – being a doctor – even though she had many opportunities in the glamour world. I feel she was a genuine person.”

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