Itsy-bitsy bikini in stormy waters

If gorgeous ladies with hot bodies in itsy-bitsy bikinis is the reason you watch international beauty pageants, then you would be surely sulking. Miss World organisers have axed bikinis from this year’s pageant to be held at Bali, Indonesia in September, out of respect to the traditional values of the host country. All contestants will be required to wear Bali’s traditional sarongs instead of the sexy bikinis that have been a key part of the competition.
“Wearing bikinis is not just about skin show, as many would perceive. It is meant to show the confidence level and composure of a contestant in high-pressure environment. The way a woman walks, stands or sits in a bikini tells a lot about her personality. The audience might have a tendency to objectify women sporting bikinis but at the end we are looking for all-rounders in these pageants,” says Narresh Kukreja of the swimwear design duo, Shivan & Narresh.
“Wearing bikinis requires a lot of hard work. It is not just about being hot! For 3G, I had to go on a fruit diet to get a bikini body, inspite of the fact that I am quite fit. In international pageants, apart from your intellect, one also has to possess the proper body. Bikinis are meant to focus on that and the hard work behind it. But then, if it comes in the way of the host land’s religious integrity, it is best not to hurt their sentiments,” says actress and former Femina Miss India contestant, Sonal Chauhan.
Isn’t it oft said — when in Rome do as the Romans do! “One has to respect the sentiments of the particular religion, place or country. As Islam is practiced by majority in Indonesia, bikinis are definitely problematic. Having said that, the contestants need to be chosen based on a perfect 10 figure, and one’s vital statistics can definitely be gauged based on sarongs and swimsuits,” says former model and grooming expert, Mehar Bhasin.
Not all are bothered by the implications of the scrapping of the bikinis from the international pageant. “While bikinis are essential to gauge the body type for models, I feel that over the last decade international pageants have not really managed to produce great international faces. These pageants are archaic in their approach and have long surpassed their days of glory. So I am hardly affected with the bikini being done away,” quips fashion photographer Atul Kasbekar.

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