The answer of Miss Nepal International 2017, Niti Shah, to one of the questions in the contest has created a lot of out-roar among Nepali people. In the answer she has told that there are two categories of Nepali women – one the urban women and the second the rural women. While urban women have better education and have better parents, the rural women are the disadvantaged group of people. She also told that most of the rural women are sold to foreign countries for prostitution.
It is true that some of the rural women are disadvantaged but, that doesn’t mean every rural women are in bad condition or are uneducated. A lot of urban women haven’t got education. She shouldn’t have generalized them.
A beauty contest is about talent of the contestant to create a better image of the country in the international arena. They are supposed to be more positive than what Niti said in the contest.
Here is the summary of what Niti has done :
- She defamed Nepal.
- She undermined Nepali women.
- She wrongly categorized and generalized Nepali women as urban and rural.
- All urban women are not good or educated
- All rural women are not uneducated.
- She used negative tone when talking about Nepali women. She could have said the same thing in a positive tone and it wouldn’t have sounded so offensive.
One thing is sure, Niti lacks the diplomacy a beauty contest winner needs. She was considered one of the most viable winner of Miss Nepal when she participated in the contest. As she was familiar with the contest organizers and the contest judges, there was an advantage she had over other contestants. Her physical beauty had also contributed in people’s choice of her as their Miss Nepal. But, after the Miss International blunder and the way Miss Nepal World, Nikita Chandak, is carrying Nepal forward, people have realized that it was a right decision.
Full statement in Nepali (unofficial translation)