Harnaaz Sandhu from India has been crowned Miss Universe 2021 at the 70th edition of the contest held in Eilat, Israel.
The 21-year old from Chandigarh representing India at the 70th Miss Universe 2021, will bring home the title won 21 years ago by Lara Dutta from India in 2000. Harnaaz edged out South Africa’s Lalela Mswane and Paraguay’s Nadia Ferreira.
Paraguay and South Africa finished first and the second runners-up respectively.
The crown was presented by Andrea Meza, former Miss Universe 2020 from Mexico.
Two Indians, Sushmita Sen (1994) and Lara Dutta (2000) have previously won the Miss Universe title.
In the final round, the contestants were asked, “What advice would you give to young women watching on how to deal with the pressures they face today?”
Harnaaz said, “The biggest pressure the youth of today is facing, is to believe in themselves. Know that you are unique makes you beautiful…..Stop comparing yourselves with others and let’s talk about more important things that are happening worldwide…… Come out, speak for yourself, because you are the leader of your life….. I believed in myself and that is why I am standing here today.”
Harnaaz, who has been modelling since the age of 17, has previously been crowned Miss Diva 2021, Femina Miss India Punjab 2019 and finished in the Top 12 at Femina Miss India 2019. She also acts in Punjabi films.