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HindustanTimes Mon,21 Apr 2014

Beauty pageant to raise voice for Sarabjit's release

Sumaiya Yousuf, Hindustan Times  Bhopal, January 19, 2013
First Published: 11:44 IST(19/1/2013) | Last Updated: 11:46 IST(19/1/2013)

A beauty pageant titled 'Miss Glory of Universe' began here on Friday for a different cause: to draw the world's attention to the incarceration of Sarabjit Singh in Pakistan and demanding his release.

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"It is not only a beauty contest but it is also a platform where beauty and peace will come together. We have specially organised this to make a heartfelt appeal to Pakistan to exonerate Sarabjit Singh, who is jailed in Pakistan since 1990. We will also demand the release of other innocent prisoners in Pakistan jails," said Mahesh Yadav, the organiser of the show, while speaking to the Hindustan Times.

The four-day beauty pageant started on Friday at Hotel Ronak Plaza in MP Nagar. It will continue from Saturday in Hotel Vigyashree in MP Nagar Bhopal till Monday. The sister of Sarabjit Singh, Dalbir Kaur, and her daughter Poonam Kaur will come on Saturday. Dalbir Kaur will take part in the programme as the chief guest.

Yadav said they had prepared a 50-feet banner with the message to demand release of Sarabjit Singh. As soon as the show gets finished, they would start a campaign from Amritsar, Jallianwala Bagh.

The winner of the contest is slated to visit Pakistan along with activists Mahesh Yadav, Aman Gandhi and other team members. They will be carrying the 50-feet long banner with them and they will also be submitting a memorandum, a blood letter appeal and video messages of film stars to the President and the Prime Minister of Pakistan. "A similar memorandum, a blood letter and video messages will be submitted to the USA also," he added.

A German model, Sarah Knappik, 26, also arrived in Bhopal from Berlin to participate in the show. Director of German television, Boris Erdtmann, was also present on the show.

Knappik said, "It is a great honour to me to present myself as a peace ambassador here in India and to support the innocent prisoners. I am also here to support those innocent prisoners who are imprisoned in German jails. If I come out to be winner I will definitely visit Pakistan to make the appeal. There will be no objections from my side in this concern. I am feeling so happy to be the part of this contest and I have bought an Indian sari to wear for the show.

Another participant Aakansha Dhiman from Chandigarh said, "The theme of the contest inspired me a lot. It brought a good and positive feeling inside me to take part in this contest. My parents are here with me, they also stand by me."

Father of Aakansha Dhiman, Shaktichand Daiman, said, "I will feel proud to send my daughter to Pakistan for the appeal for releasing Sarabjit if she wins the contest."

Other participants included Garima Goyal from Indore, Deepika Yadav from Bhopal, Raashi Agrawal from Chhindwara, Aakansha Choudhury from Meerut, Apurva Gosh from Bhopal, Isha Sharma from Rajasthan, Neha Kapoor from Mumbai. All the participants have managed to come here on their own expenses but rest of the expenses on stay and food will be borne by the organisers.

The winner of the contest will also be given an opportunity to act in the Bollywood movie Blood Satyagraha, which is based on social cause, as the parallel lead role, the organisers said. Other title winners will get supporting roles in this film, which will be released on August 9, 2013.

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