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Miss Japan speaks Bengali, listens to Hindi music and loves Bollywood films

Miss Japan 2016 Priyanka Yoshikawa, who is half Indian, loves Bollywood movies and considers Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Priyanka Chopra her role models.

fashion and trends Updated: Sep 13, 2016 07:33 IST
Naina Arora
Miss Japan 2016 Priyanka Yoshikawa will be representing Japan at Miss World crown in Washington this November.
Miss Japan 2016 Priyanka Yoshikawa will be representing Japan at Miss World crown in Washington this November.(Miss World Japan)

She’s half-Indian by birth, and way more Indian by choice — Miss Japan 2016 Priyanka Yoshikawa speaks Bengali, has lived in India, listens to Hindi songs, and is a fan of Bollywood films. Basically, she loves everything about India as much as she loves Japan.

Born to a Bengali father and Japanese mother, the 22-year-old was subject to racial slur, and called haafu (having one non-Japanese parent). Talk about pressure and she shuns it by saying ‘not a problem’ and is only thankful for the support she has received worldwide.

“I did not feel the pressure of being mixed and representing. What I faced was more of support and best wishes. I am very thankful, I have received great support from my country Japan and from India and other countries as well. I feel very grateful. I am grateful that I am representing my country. I am looking forward to going to Washington DC to represent Japan at the Miss World Crown in November,” says Yoshikawa, who has a house in Kolkata.

“I was born and raised in Tokyo. I have lived in India for a year when I was nine years old. My mother tongue is Japanese. I speak English and Bengali, too. Even my mom speaks Bengali. So, we all speak the same languages,” she says.

Miss Japan 2016 Priyanka Yoshikawa has her paternal roots in India. She has a house in Kolkata, and spent a year in India as a child. She also speaks Bengali, and so does her Japanese mother. (Miss World Japan)

Yoshikawa often searches for Indian music online. “I listen to Hindi songs on YouTube and I love Bollywood movies — they are very entertaining and are getting so big around the world,” she says.

Any favourite actors? “Oh yes, Varun Dhawan! I’m (also) a big fan of Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Priyanka Chopra; they are very strong in how they represent themselves. They’re a role model for me,” says Yoshikawa, who’d love to star in an Indian film. “Bollywood is a big industry... It has the best actors in the world. I’ll be honoured,” she says.

READ:Half-Indian Priyanka Yoshikawa crowned Miss Japan, but not everyone’s impressed

The young girl says she undertook the challenge of a beauty pageant so she could do charity. “I’ve always wanted to help children. I have lived in India for one year and I saw a lot of differences between the countries (India and Japan). I couldn’t just not see what I am seeing. That was always the reason that I have always wanted to do something. The slogan for Miss World, ‘Beauty with a purpose’, is perfect. It’s the right way of moving into action,” says Yoshikawa.