12 October 2008

The Very First Miss Bhutan

While the audience looked on with unabated breath, 24-year-old Tshokey Tshomo Karchung was crowned Miss Bhutan 2008 at a contest held in Thimphu 10 October. The Miss Bhutan also walked away with two other titles: Miss Talented and Miss Photogenic. “I kept every confidence to compete and I am so relieved,” said Tshokey Tshomo who will be representing the country for Miss Earth 2008 in Philippines and Miss Young International in Taiwan.

Among other prizes, the Miss Bhutan took home a cash prize of Nu 0.1 million.

She was crowned by Miss Thailand 2006 Charm Reya Osthanond, one of the five judges. Fifteen women competed for the title at the contest that lasted past midnight.

“The grand finale had seven judges for the finals, five Bhutanese and two international celebrities – Kelly Dorji and former Miss Thailand and actress Charm Reya Osathanond,” said Karma Tshering, Director of Miss Bhutan Organisation that hosted the event.

“The reason we had more Bhutanese judges is to make sure that the contestants are judged more on inner beauty than on physical beauty. In most of the international pageants, they have only one round on inner beauty, the Q&A round and that’s it,” Karma said. The finals had five rounds – traditional dress round, evening gown round (using Bhutanese textiles), express yourself round, talent round and Q&A round. There will be no swimsuit round. “We did not have any swimsuit round. We don't think it is really necessary. It instead worries many parents, relatives and community. True beauty needs not be judged through one’s skin,” Karma said. “But of course, when our winner participates in international pageants, she has to follow the criteria they set,” he added.

Held for the first time, 77 contestants from across the country registered for Miss Bhutan 2008. Twenty contestants were shortlisted for the main event through the preliminary round. The winner of the title is the country’s only delegate at global pageants. She will be participating in Miss Earth pageant in Philippines, Miss Young International in Taiwan and Miss Safari 2008 in Kenya later this year.

“We think beauty of a woman should not only be judged on her physical appearance but on her inner qualities like concern for tradition and culture, preservation of environment, social awareness, general knowledge and above all who is kind and seek to improve the lives of others. This is our version of true beauty,” Karma added. “This concept will make us stand out and I wish all the international contests are judged more on inner beauty, at least 50 per cent. A winner judged on inner beauty will not only make a great role model but will also be able to render better service to charitable works,” Karma said.

SOURCE: Sonam Pelden of kuenselonline.com and another reporter timesofindia.indiatimes.com