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Beauty for a cause


SOMETIMES A beauty pageant can be a wee bit different which makes all the difference -the Rotary Beauty pageant organised recently at Le Meridien by the Rotary Greater Cochin was unique in its purpose. Here the fair faced and graceful beauties who competed for the title "Rotary Beauty Queen" also lend their beauty for a nobler cause. The proceeds from the ticket sales of the Rotary Beauty Queen will go towards free surgeries for cataract patients and for a Rotary Village.

Mr. Raman Menon, member of Rotary Greater Cochin and the Program Co-ordinator of the event says, "Every month we conduct free cataract operations for the needy. To collect funds for this we decided to organise an entertainment evening along with a beauty contest called the Rotary Grand Ball 2003. Besides the beauty contest there were fashion shows and dance programs. The money collected through ticket sales after costs, will go towards conducting free cataract surgeries. We also plan to build a Rotary Village in the year 2005 so we are collecting money to buy the land and build the village."

From among the eight final contestants Ms. Smitha Menon was declared the Rotary Beauty Queen. Smitha, a third year degree student at Sacred Hearts College at Thevara says "I have never taken part before in a beauty contest though I have been modelling for the past four years. But when I heard about the cause I was interested." There were three rounds - the traditional, the casual and the evening wear round. In the final round the question put across to the contestants was "Good girls go to heaven and bad girls go everywhere - what would you choose?" Smitha gave a tongue in cheek reply that she did not wish to be a goody-goody and wanted to go to hell. Cool and spirited Smitha snatched the title.

Says Smitha "Taking part in this contest has really boosted up my confidence and I don't think I will have any problems entering another contest." Smitha who has been modelling for the past four years adds "Modelling is only developing in Kochi and it is not professionally channelled. I hope modelling in Kochi will soon catch up and become like what it is in Mumbai or Bangalore." Saumya Sambasivan who is the reigning Navy Queen of Kochi was one of the judges at the contest. Says Saumya "It was nice to judge for the tension of participating was not there." The event was organised by Fonix Events an event management company. Jude Felix one of the partners points out "The Rotary Queen Contest was an open event for anyone in Kerala, but many thought it was only for the Rotarians otherwise the number of participants would have been much higher." It seems like every other ingredient of the usual beauty contests was there in the Rotary Beauty contest, but the cause is what is important and unique. And it does makes all difference in the world to those who need that cataract operation.

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