MISS Tourism Zimbabwe 2018 first princess, Natalie Chido Mangondo, has received another feather in her cap after she was crowned the inaugural Miss India-Zimbabwe at a glamorous ceremony held at a Harare hotel on Monday.
BY WINSTONE ANTONIO
The 22-year-old University of Cape Town economics student shrugged off stiff competition from 14 other beauties to land the crown.
Courtesy of her win, she booked a ticket to represent Zimbabwe at the Miss India Worldwide pageant in Mumbai, India next year.
Aliana Saiyed and Shannon Vlahakis were crowned first and second princess respectively.
The pageant, which had two categories — one for contestants aged between 17 to 25 years and the empress category for the mature and married women with an interest in the world of fashion and beauty, — also saw fashionista Jenika Shah being crowned Mrs India–Zimbabwe.
Mangondo told NewsDay Life & Style that she was excited to have landed the coveted crown.
“I want to thank the pageant organisers for putting together such a pageant and I am happy that I as the Miss India–Zimbabwe will be promoting Indian and Zimbabwean cultures,” she said.
The pageant founder Rhea Babbar said while India had a huge modelling and fashion industry, they wanted to use the pageant to groom and empower a beauty queen with potential to be Miss India Worldwide.
“With Miss India — Zimbabwe we want to introduce the girls from across the country to Bollywood and Indian culture because there is such a great community in Zimbabwe of Indians,” she said.
“The pageant is not racially exclusive and it entails etiquette training, fashion and dress sense, deportment, speech and eloquence training, including most importantly confidence building. It also highlights the importance of recognising talent and empowering the girl child in our society to become more aware and responsive to challenges they face in society.”
Prizes for the winners included cosmetic vouchers and mobile phones from one of the country’s leading mobile phone operators.