Miss India South Africa has no Bollywood dreams
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Miss India South Africa has no Bollywood dreams

Remona Moodley, who plans to become an engineer, is keenly looking forward to her first visit to India.

india Updated: Sep 02, 2005 12:08 IST

Remona Moodley has no dreams of being a Bollywood actress or walking the ramp as a model after becoming the youngest ever winner of the Miss India South Africa contest.

But Moodley, 17, who plans to become an electrical engineer, is certainly keenly looking forward to her first visit to India when she goes to Mumbai at the end of the year to represent South Africa against a host of winners from countries in the Indian diaspora in the Miss India Worldwide Pageant.

For now Moodley has put her excitement behind her as she concentrates on preparing for her final schooling exams at a private school here.

"I started entering beauty pageants since I was about six years old, but it wasn't really until last year that it really took off," Moodley told IANS.

"Since then I've won a couple of titles, including Miss Teen Alberton (the town south of here where she lives) last year," Moodley said.

She admitted that it had been tough to juggle her schooling and preparing for the regional provincial round and the national final of the Miss India SA contest, which took place during Women's Month in South Africa.

A student of belly dancing with a local teacher for the past two years, Moodley thrilled the audience at the pageant with a double-barrelled item.

"It was a poem which represented the oppression of women, and a belly dance to show the freedom of women," said Moodley, adding quickly that it was hardly a professional item, as it takes three to four years to become an adept belly dancer.

Proud parents Babes and Daya and elder sister Ricolene, who Remona called "an introvert and the homely type, completely different from me", lent great moral support.

They as well as other family members will also be in Mumbai to cheer her on.

"It will be great to learn from women from the diaspora how Indians live there, Moodley said.

"We know about Indians in South Africa and Indians in India, but the pageant will be an opportunity to spend time with other girls and see how they live in their country."

First Published: Sep 02, 2005 12:08 IST