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Miss Deaf Asia Nishtha Dudeja credits her win to a fighting spirit, a Newz Hook exclusive

November 8, 2018

Nishtha Dudeja has not left the headlines since she made history by becoming the first Indian to win the Miss Deaf Asia title at an international pageant held in Prague in October this year.

In an exclusive interview to Newz Hook, Nishtha, who is also the first Indian to win any title in the prestigious event, talked about what went on behind the scenes during the competition. From all accounts this was a tough pageant with five intense rounds - Casual Wear, Swimsuit, National Costume, Talent and the Evening Gown, which was also the final round.

The 22-year-old says she was able to ace it as she had prepared well, and it was the confidence that gave her en edge.

I prepared for the various rounds with the help of professionals in the field. All my life I had donned sports shoes, so imagining the idea of walking the ramp on high heels was difficult in itself! Similarly, learning make up was equally difficult. - Nishtha Dudeja, Miss Deaf Asia 2018

The toughest task for Nishtha was learning how to dance as "it is generally difficult to understand rhythm, lyrics etc. with such a severe hearing loss." She credits her choreographers, Ridhika and Umang for motivating her to get the steps right. Nishtha danced to the song Nagaade sang dhol baaje and had the entire audience rocking.

There is much more to Nishtha than just a lovely face. She has also excelled at sports and academics, something she credits to her "great fighting spirit and a drive to challenge boundaries." All of this is backed by plenty of grit and determination.

"I consider myself lucky to have got the chance to pursue my dreams which everybody does not get. However, I had to work very hard to realize these dreams. I was fortunate to have been born in a family whose every member took it as a mission to bring me up to be at par with others. The dedication of my mother, patience of my brother and motivation of my father are beyond any words."

Nishtha, who is presently doing an MA in Economics from the University of Mumbai plans to continue pushing boundaries and break the walls that people with disabilities often find themselves confronted with.

"There is a very limited acceptance of people with disabilities in any profession, let alone films and TV. I look forward to work in any profession, including films, TV, web series or modelling because I am sure I will be able to make positive contribution to whatever I do."

With this kind of spirit and attitude, no one can stop this feisty young woman. To know more about her, watch her signature for the Miss Deaf Asia event.

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