Miss World 2023, being held in India after 27 years, is likely to change its format for its India chapter. Usually held in a city or two, the 2023 edition will likely see the pageant in a touring format, as in, different events will be held in different cities.
In an exclusive interview with The Week, Jamil Saidi, chairman, PME Entertainment, Dubai-based global entertainment firm bringing the Miss World pageant to India, said they have met various state governments for holding separate Miss World events in their cities.
"We met authorities in Kerala, Maharashtra, Goa, Kashmir, and UP and spoke about why the event should be held in their cities. We would love to start the first function in Varanasi with a Ganga aarti. We want to show that UP is much more beyond the Taj. We would love to take the participants to see the local artisans and their work on silk sarees."
The year 2023 has been spectacular for India and put the country on the global map. From becoming the first country to land on the Southern pole of the moon to playing host for the G20 summit, hosting the Cricket World Cup 2023 later this year and to holding the Miss World pageant after nearly three decades, Saidi says, India is claiming its position in the world.
The Miss World team including the reigning Miss World Karolina Bielawska recently visited Kashmir on a one-day tour to soak in its culture and the warmth of people. Saidi says that it was a strategic move and will change the perception of Kashmir that is reported in the international media and as the participants go back to their countries, they will take many warm stories to tell from the land.
"Jammu & Kashmir tourism and the honourable lieutenant governor were very supportive of us. That is why we want to take the participants to different parts of India – to show them how beautiful our country is. I would also love to take them to a cricket match when the World Cup begins."
However, the venue for the final event hasn’t been shortlisted yet as discussions are currently on with various stakeholders. But Saidi is all for a touring pageant as he believes that holding it in one city won’t do justice to the beauty of the country.
The events are likely to start before Diwali in October and according to Saidi, a grand Diwali party will be hosted for the participants and the team. The final event is likely to conclude by mid-December.