Little Miss Perfect

Winner of the Gladrags Little Miss India 2012, Karuna Singh talks about her aspirations to be a beauty queen.

Wearing stilettos, an off-shoulder black dress, flawless makeup and a sparkling tiara, Karuna Singh posed for shutterbugs with such confidence, she could be mistaken for a seasoned model. However, what gave away her age were the braces on her teeth and a soft voice peppered with giggles. Having recently been crowned Gladrags Little Miss India 2012, the 16-year-old, though polite and eloquent, made no apologies for arriving suitably late for her tete-a-tete with the media this afternoon.

Flanked by her family — brother, parents and grandparents — she was ready to face a volley of questions. "I have always dreamt of winning a beauty pageant. While growing up, I idolised former Miss India winner Yukta Mookhey," Singh said.

Having bagged the title of Little Miss India Punjab in June last year, Singh represented Punjab as one of the finalists among others from Bangalore, Delhi, Mumbai and Pune, who competed for the title in Mumbai on January 26. The event was adjudged by Gladrags founder Maureen Wadia, along with designer-socialite Nandita Mahtani, socialite Haseena Jethmalani and well-known thespian Raell Padamsee.

Singh was honest about her aspirations to win the Miss Universe crown. "I want to compete for Miss India and hopefully, go on to win Miss Universe," she said. Not new to the world of contests, Karuna was crowned "Rose Princess" when she was six months old at the annual Chandigarh Rose Festival. Her mother, Manpreet Kaur, said, "Her confidence is her biggest asset and as parents we would like to encourage her. The win has been a surprise to us too as she's quite a tomboy at home."

Not shy of her braces, Singh said it was her choice to go for the finals despite people telling her it might go against her. "Mrs Maureen Wadia is a very motivating person and she said the contest was looking for all-rounders and I wanted to be myself," admitted Singh, who has previously studied at Lawrence School, Ooty, and is now at New Public School, Chandigarh.

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