Miss India winners: 1979

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L-R: Lorraine Rose, Swaroop Sampat, Smita Tharoor
Raina Mendonca at a press conference at the Royal Albert Hall in London just before the Miss World contest for 1979

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Miss India winners: 1979

Femina Miss India 1979 Femina Miss India 1979, also Miss Bombay

First runner-up Smita Tharoor of Calcutta

Second runner-up Lorraine Rose of Bombay

Miss India: Raina Winifred Mendonca represented India at Miss World 1979 as MISS INDIA. See note below.

In one source there is a reference to Ruhel from Bangladesh [???]

Swaroop Sampat

Miss India 1979: She starred in the many popular television serials like Yeh joh hai jindagi , and launched her career as an actress. She leads a happy married life with Bollywood actor Paresh Rawal and is associated with theatre industry. Swaroop went on to obtain a Ph.D in Education and works with children who have special needs, even teaching them acting. She was last seen in Bollywood film Saathiya in 2002.

In 1979, when Swaroop Sampat was preparing for the Miss Universe pageant (after winning the Miss India crown), she did not have the luxury to flaunt a designer gown on stage; instead, she wore a sequined chiffon saree with a halter blouse sent by her mother during the National Costume challenge.

Raina Winifred Mendonca

Several sites (e.g. Yahoo, Oocities, Wikipedia) state that Raina Winifred Mendonca was the first runner up at Miss India 1979.

On receipt of a complaint from one of the contestants of that pageant, Indpaedia checked with Bennet Coleman’s Times Content site. Indeed, Raina’s name did not figure among the top three. Perhaps she was a runner up (more likely, a winner) in some parallel Miss India contest.

Raina Mendonca certainly represented India as Miss India at Miss World 1979 in London, from a press conference of which Indpaedia’s volunteers have extracted the extremely rare picture of Raina that we see on this page.

Could Raina have won the 1978 contest but participated only the next year? Indpaedia’s own data bank indicates that this did not happen. Could she have won a pageant organised by an organisation other than Femina? This, too, is unlikely because by 1976 Femina had started sending representative to Miss World. Eve’s Weekly had switched to Miss International. So, Raina was India’s representative, but perhaps chosen at a contest other than the one that Swaroop won.

An authentic source has recorded that Raina was ‘Top 10 Photographer’s choice’ (presumably at the Miss World contest).

Nita Pinto

1979 India’s representative for Miss International, selected by Eve’s Weekly Nita Pinto

Sources for the Miss India series of articles on Indpaedia include, in the alphabetical order:

Daum DesiHotMasala I AM She IndianAutographs LatestNewsPics MensXp Mid-Day MissIndiaWorldUniverse Missosology Missosology Missosology Oocities Pageantopolis SabreBiade SouthDreamz The Times of India The Times of India The Times of India The Times of India The Times of India Arunima Mazumdar & Richa Barua The Times of India The Times of India Voy.com

Related articles on Indpaedia:

Miss India contests: History Miss India contests: Behind the scenes Miss India winners: 1947-58 Miss Ind1a winners: 1959-61 Miss India winners: 1962-64 Miss India winners: 1965 Miss India winners: 1966 Miss India winners: 1967 Miss India winners: 1968 Miss India winners: 1969 Miss India winners: 1970 Miss India winners: 1971 Miss India winners: 1972 Miss India winners: 1973 Miss India winners: 1974 Miss India winners: 1975 Miss India winners: 1976 Miss India winners: 1977 Miss India winners: 1978 Miss India winners: 1979 Miss India winners: 1980 Miss India winners: 1981 Miss India winners: 1982 Miss India winners: 1983 Miss India winners: 1984 Miss India winners: 1985 Miss India winners: 1986 Miss India winners: 1987 Miss India winners: 1988-89 Miss India winners: 1989/ 90 Miss India winners: 1991 Miss India winners: 1992 Miss India winners: 1993 Miss India winners: 1994 Miss India winners: 1995 Miss India winners: 1996 Miss India winners: 1997 Miss India winners: 1998 Miss India winners: 1999 Miss India winners: 2000Miss India winners: 2001Miss India winners: 2002Miss India winners: 2003Miss India winners: 2004Miss India winners: 2005Miss India winners: 2006Miss India winners: 2007Miss India winners: 2008Miss India winners: 2009 Miss India winners: 2010 Miss India winners: 2011 Miss India winners: 2012 Miss India winners: 2013 Miss India winners: 2014 (regional) Miss India winners: 2014

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