The All-round Girl : Engineer, Dancer, Model and now Miss India Qatar

Exclusive interview with the winner of Miss India Qatar 2015, who would represent Qatar at Miss India Worldwide.

“A mode of conduct, a standard of courage, discipline, fortitude, and integrity can do a great deal to make a woman beautiful” – Jacqueline Bisset

Gone are the days when beauty queens were considered to be size-zero girls with loads of make-up and no real personality. Today, the beauty pageant winners are decided on a plethora of  factors like confidence, poise, overall appearance, the way you move on stage and how you answer the questions.

23 year old Jyotsna Arora is a perfect example of today’s confident girl, who strive to excel in different roles. Hailing from New Delhi, Jyotsna is an electronics and communications engineer by profession and currently works with an EPC firm in Dubai.

Recently she was crowned as Miss India Qatar 2015 and will be representing Qatar at the prestigious Miss India Worldwide pageant, to be held in Mumbai in September, where winners from 40 countries would participate.

At Miss India UAE & Qatar, she was also awarded the title of “City 1016 Listener’s Choice” after getting 18,000 votes from public.

Jyotsna is also a professionally trained dancer by the Shiamak Davar’s Institute of Performing Arts and part of a 12 years old dance troupe called TNDF ( The New Dance Factory). She has performed for some of the big names like Pepsico, Al Naboodah Motors and with many bollywood stars like Neeti Mohan, Jacqueline Fernandes etc.

Jyotsna is also in limelight as the face for many popular brands and is the brand ambassador for fashion brand Anisa Couture.

Through this exclusive interview, NRICafe is pleased to introduce Jyotsna Arora to a wider audience of Indians in Qatar and wish her good luck for bigger stages.

Congratulations on winning the title of Miss India Qatar 2015. You are an electronics and communication engineer by profession. So why this big leap into modelling?

Thank you for your wishes! Along with being an engineer, I’m also a professionally trained dancer. I have spent a considerable time of my life performing on stage because of which I’ve always had a strong penchant for the glamour world.
As the proverb goes “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”, I strongly live by it and have always given importance to extracurricular activities. I’ve been a part of many modelling shows ever since I was in university. So, it’s not really a big leap.
In my own world of fantasy, I always wondered what it would be like to be called a “beauty queen” & when I read about the auditions to be held for Miss India UAE & Qatar, I decided to kick it up a notch, try and take my passion to the next level.

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How was the audition and selection process?
Open auditions were held for all the interested applicants. 16 girls were then short-listed as the finalists, and I was one of them. The short listed candidates went through a one week training program under the guidance of well-established professionals from the fashion industry in Mumbai.
The life changing finale took place on the 11th April 2015 at Al Raha Beach Resort, Abu Dhabi. All the finalists went through a series of rounds like ramp walk in ethnic wear and gowns, introduction speeches & dance. Based on these rounds, top 5 were announced who had to then go through the Q & A round for the final judgement.

How helpful was the grooming experience in sharpening your skills?
We had a backbreaking schedule for the training! It included sessions on public speaking by immensely talented RJs, professional portfolio shoot by one of the renowned photographers in Mumbai (Rohan Gandotra), Fashion styling and choreography by another well-known name in Mumbai ( Retesh Narain), Dance workshops by an esteemed institute called DANS ( Dance Avec Nigel & Satyen).
All the contestants got individual attention and our skills were honed meticulously. I could walk better, I was more articulate in my speech.
We had back to back sessions and indeed it was very hectic but my confidence level had increased tremendously after the training because by then, I clearly knew my dos and don’ts. Basically, the whole experience has brought out a side of me that I never knew existed.
You are also a professionally trained dancer. Has that helped you in your journey?
I have been dancing since a very young age and so, the stage on the day of the finale, was a familiar place to me. We had a dance round and even though we were not marked on it, it helped me make an impact on the judges and the audience.
Being a more experienced dancer, it definitely helped me to stand out amongst the lot. However, there will be a talent round at Miss India Worldwide and my talent being dance; I’m preparing a dance routine and hoping it works as an advantage for me.

Many people criticize that beauty pageants are judged on superficial looks. What do you have to say?
Being a “Beauty” pageant, the contestants were of course judged on their appearances and the way they presented themselves. However, looks were definitely not the deciding factor.

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What is looked at is, whether a girl is more than just a pretty face, whether or not she can talk confidently in front of a thousand people and still make complete sense in what she is saying.

The Q & A round is the round with the most weightage because that’s where the cognitive abilities of the contestants are assessed. Random, unheard questions are asked and the girls have to reply spontaneously.
To think of an answer in that time frame, pressure and yet give a valid reply that makes an impact on the audience & the judges definitely takes more than just superficial looks. The key qualities that the girls were judged on included confidence, poise, presence of mind and intellect.
Now that you are about to take part in Miss India Worldwide, how do you plan to prepare for the bigger event?
I’m giving it all that I have to prepare for Miss India Worldwide.

Jyotsna at a worksite
From 7:30 in the morning to 5:30 in the evening , I’m an engineer running on field to carry out inspections and in the evenings and over the weekends, I dedicate my time to prepare for the pageant.

I’m working to try and perfect all the aspects like walk & posture, being more eloquent in my speech and we’re also undertaking an Image Consultancy/Style Workshop by Jannat Miranda, who is the ex-brand ambassador of Vogue Café Dubai.
Simultaneously, I’m preparing a dance routine for my talent round. I’m staying positive & I’ll definitely put my best foot forward to get the crown!

Even though you are from UAE, you would be representing Qatar at Miss India Worldwide. Your thoughts on Qatar?
The auditions to take part in Miss India UAE and Miss India Qatar were open to girls from both the countries. As I’m working in Dubai, I applied to take part for UAE and ended up winning the title of second runner up.
The pageant was organized by a company called Emirates Vision Events which also happens to be the National Director for Qatar at Miss India Worldwide. They chose me to represent Qatar.

Qatar, being one of the fastest growing economies in the world and all set to host FIFA in 2022, I consider myself lucky to have my title associated to such a prestigious and powerful name.

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I hope to reach out to the people of Qatar and seek support from them for my upcoming journey. Also, I want to explore more and would be more than keen to take up opportunities in Qatar.
Modelling is believed to involve lot of strict dieting and fitness training. Is it lot of hard work?

No Pain, no gain! That’s my driving force. It’s true that modelling involves a lot of strict dieting and fitness training. Luckily for me, dance has helped me build a strong metabolism over the years and that’s my main form of exercise.
Also, my job requires a lot of on-site work which includes wearing heavy harnesses, climbing ladders etc. So, I’m always on my toes. Apart from physical training, I make sure to have early dinner (Before 7p.m) and keep myself hydrated throughout the day.
What are your hopes and aspirations for the future? Is Bollywood on the cards?
Every time I do something, I want to do something bigger the next time. But in the process of wanting to do that, I don’t want to lose focus right now; hence, I’m mainly concentrating on preparing for the pageant. I have many on-going projects and hope to keep delivering some good work. I’m sure rest will follow.
Bollywood is not on the cards yet, but with the right amount of hard work and determination, I’m confident it’s not a far-fetched dream.
You were also awarded the title of “City 1016 Listener’s Choice” after receiving a whopping 18,000 votes from public. Any message to our readers?

I was overwhelmed by the response I got from the public and strongly hope that the love and support will continue to grow. There is no greater sense of satisfaction than knowing that your work is being acknowledged and appreciated.

First of all, if you’re reading this, it means you have taken out the time to read the interview and I want to thank you for that! My message to all the readers out there would be: From my experience, best things happen unexpectedly. So, take risks, explore your options and give your 100 percent in whatever it is that you pursue.

You can connect with Jyotsna on Facebook.

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