A drive to remove "height" as an eligibility criteria from beauty pageants like Miss India

A drive to remove "height" as an eligibility criteria from beauty pageants like Miss India

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JIGEESHA GUHA started this petition to The Times Group and

Any woman of any size should be allowed to participate in popular beauty pageants like Miss India because putting on some unnecessary and irrelevant standards to beauty, itself is flawed and out-dated. Women regardless of their height should be seen and heard in society.

Miss India or Femina Miss World is a national beauty pageant in India that annually selects representatives to compete in one of the major international beauty pageant,Miss World .It is organised by Femina,a women's magazine published by The Times Group.Since 2013,Femina also organises Miss Diva separately which sends representatives to Miss Universe.Now there're certain eligibility criterias formed for the ones who want to apply for such contests and following are some of the main points to be noted:

  • Age:18-25 years
  • Height:5.4"& Above(without heels)
  • Marital status:Single,Unmarried and not engaged.

Now,here the matter of concern is the "height", because average height of women in India is 5.3 feet(162 cm) and even lesser than that.So,due to such high standard of height set as a compulsary eligibilty criteria for Miss India contest is prohibiting so many deserving candidates to showcase their talent to the world which also contradicts the real purpose of a beauty contest that is,to empower women who have a vision of making themselves stronger and better,and empower other women to do the same,and come together as one.The focus on empowerment is something we could focus on more,rather than just the physical beauty of the women who competes.

Also,not seeing positive representation of women of different sizes in media especially in the beauty industry,negatively affects how women percieve themselves and this also promotes "Body Shaming".

In order to make this issue better understandable to you,here's a collection of short article(By Jinendra Aherkar), which might appear relatable to almost every Indian girls who dreams of being a part of such prestigious contests;

"Just imagine;A child who watched the Miss India pageant on TV with her mother and since then she developed a vision to win Miss India one day.Right from a very young age,she starts preparing towards being the most ideal candidate for Miss India.She maintains a healthy lifestyle,makes her academic profile stronger,builds her public speaking skill,she doesn't leave her stone unturned.She is 20 now and thinks she is ready to finally put her years of preparation to test and participate in Miss India.But guess what ! No matter how much she worked on her skills,there was something beyond her control that stops her from even trying to achieve her dream because she is below 5'4".Just having the dream of winning the crown and being ready to put all the required hardwork is of no value,if you aren't tall enough.But do we really need this criteria?Does this criteria hold any relevance in terms of talent of a person?The only arguement to have height criteria at National pageants is to win an international pageant,you need to be of a certain height.Firstly,except for a very few,most prestigious international pageants such as Miss Universe or Miss World don't have such criteria.More importantly,why do we define Miss India based on what international pageants want!It's about time to bring some change! Removing height criteria is not just beneficial for participants,it will also help Miss India in growing its base.It's about being more inclusive in variety of selection."

Since it's quite proven that Femina Miss India and Miss Diva had been quite open to feedback and suggestions(Eg:As per the requests of majority,they kept the finale live and ticket based so that fans can watch it personally;Also, when majority said to remove the reality show format from Miss Diva,they did it in 2018;and so on),hence,this time also we're with a very strong hope that,"The Miss India" organisation will definitely understand the depth of the mentioned issue faced by the deserving aspirants of this prestigious beauty pageant,and surely come up with a perfect solution in order to give a proper shape to the real definition of Beauty and make every women feel beautiful from both inside-out and outside-in.

Thanks!

 

 

 

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