Indian beauty Harnaaz Sandhu crowned Miss Universe 2021

India's Harnaaz Sandhu has been crowned Miss Universe 2021, two decades after Lara Dutta won the title in 2000. Twenty-one year-old Harnaaz has won the Miss Universe crown at the recently concluded contest on Monday morning. Harnaaz edged out contestants from Paraguay and South Africa to bag the crown. The moment her name was declared as the winner, Harnaaz broke down with tears of joy. 

Indian beauty Harnaaz Sandhu crowned Miss Universe 2021

Harnaaz Sandhu also joined her hands in gratitude. Mexico's Andrea Meza, the reigning queen, passed on her crown to the new successor. India had earlier won the coveted crown twice with Sushmita Sen bagging the title in 1994 and Lara Dutta in 2000. The 21-year-old Harnaaz, hailing from Chandigarh, has now joined the league of incredible women. 

After a two week-long event, a beautiful National Costume Competition, rounds of interviews, a preliminary competition and the live Finals, Harnaaz was crowned with the iconic Crown, presented to her by outgoing Miss Universe, Andrea Meza. Harnaaz will move to New York City in the new year to represent various philanthropic organizations during her reign.

“This has been an experience of a lifetime!” said Miss Universe Harnaaz Sandhu. “The past three weeks have been a dream getting to know these exceptional women, and I’m honoured to be chosen among them to represent this inspiring organization. I hope to serve the global community to the best of my ability in the year to come.”

Miss Universe India, Harnaaz Sandhu, credits her mother, who broke generations of patriarchy to become a successful gynaecologist, for inspiring her to follow her own dreams. Driven to support women in a similar way, Harnaaz grew up working with her mother at health camps, educating women about their health and menstrual hygiene. Deeply conscious of the privilege her mother’s struggles have given her, Harnaaz is a strong advocate for women’s empowerment today, particularly their constitutional rights to education, careers, and their freedom of choice. 

The Miss Universe Organization (MUO) is a global community that empowers women to realize their goals through experiences that build self-confidence and create opportunities for success. Miss Universe programs provide the 10,000 women who participate annually an international platform to effect positive change through influential humanitarian and professional efforts.