Her dream since she was a toddler of two years, Navneet Kaur Dhillon finally bagged the title of Femina Miss India World 2013 in Mumbai on Sunday. The charming Punjabi beauty confesses to have worked consistently towards realising her aim, but admits the feeling has still not sunk in.
Flooded with congratulatory calls and messages from back home in Patiala, where the 20-year-old is a media student at Punjabi University, Navneet talked with Hindustan Times from the ‘city of dreams’ about her victory and the next goal: winning the Miss World title for India after a gap of 13 odd years. Excerpts from an interaction with Navneet:
Had you ever thought of winning the Miss India World title?
It was in my mind since my childhood, but I hadn’t thought that it would become a reality at such an early stage of my career.
To whom would you dedicate this success?
I owe my success to my family, friends and my teacher, Dr Gurmeet Maan, from Punjabi University. They always showed confidence in me and helped prepare me to bag the title.
What are your plans for the future?
Though I have already started receiving offers for advertisements and ramp modelling from different companies, I don’t want to lose my focus from preparing myself for the Miss World competition. It’s been 13 years since India last bagged this title in 2000 and I want to feel the pride of bringing it back to make my country. So, my only preference at this stage is to bring the crown back.
Any plans to join Bollywood if you get an offer at this moment?
I haven’t thought of that yet. But, as I said, my focus right now is to prepare for the Miss World title. I will decide as and when the time and offers come.
Will you pursue your course at CAMS in Punjabi University, Patiala, or do you plan to shift to a bigger city now?
I would like to complete my BTech in media studies at CAMS, Patiala. Why should I shift? Patiala is not a small city…(laughs).
We have learnt that you wish to work for the empowerment of women. How do you plan to do that?
As and when I get the time, I would like to change the mindset of the people that is prejudiced against women. It can be done at any stage, in your family, at your school, at your working place or anywhere else. You don’t need any specific plans to get this job done, but you do need sincere thoughts to contribute to the development of the society.
Do you have any message for your jubilant classmates back at CAMS?
Hey guys, I will come soon and will have a grand treat for you…Chill!