CROMWELL, Conn.– Alka Marala has been crowned as Miss India Connecticut 2018. Other winners in the state pageant, which was held last week and directed by Sumathi Narayanan, were: Nikitha Kikanamada, Miss Teen India Connecticut; and Rekha Gopal, Mrs. India Connecticut.
The winners will go on to compete at the national level pageant hosted by Dharmatma Saran, Chairman of IFC, for the title of Miss, Teen, and Mrs. India USA.
“We are so proud of the beautiful, talented, and successful women of Connecticut, and we’re excited to see how they further their causes and missions in this upcoming year by using the platform given to them,” said Narayanan, president of Sumathi Narayanan Realty, owner of Swaagat Collections in Shrewsbury, MA, and State Director of Miss India Connecticut Pageant. “We also encourage all women to continue to pursue their dreams and seize these opportunities.”
Miss Marala is a student at University at Buffalo and is currently finishing up her second major. She was elected as vice president of Finance for The Women in Management organization at her university. She is a part of UB Zeal, an inter-college competitive dance team. She is also a Kuchipudi dancer, and is fortunate to have her mother as her guru. She loves to travel the world, try different foods and learn about different cultures.
The Connecticut pageant, which was held on Saturday in Cromwell, CT, was directed by Ms. Narayanan, featuring three categories: Miss, Teen, and Mrs. A total of 23 contestants participated in the pageant and confidently portrayed Indian culture, unique talents, and American pride with grace and elegance.
“The pageant was not just about outer beauty, but also valued inner beauty, intelligence, and ambition of the young women of Connecticut,” Ms. Narayanan said in statement.
Miss India Connecticut is associated and part of IFC, a pioneer in organizing Indian pageants and fashion shows in USA, and aptly called the ‘Mother of all Indian Pageants in USA.’
The Connecticut pageant event started with an opening dance choreographed by P&P Dance Crew of Connecticut, in which all the contestants performed energetic and graceful introductory dances alongside the reigning Miss India CT 2017 and 1stRunner Up of Miss India USA 2017: Prachi Shah.
The opening dance was then followed by the ethnic wear round, where each contestant proudly displayed their Indian culture. Next was the talent round, in which contestants displayed their talent through dance and musical performances, acting, martial arts, crafts, and even magic shows. The contestants then gave their introduction in the evening gown round. Lastly, the finalists amazed everyone with their wits in the question and answer round.
The judges of the pageant were accomplished patrons of the arts from the New England area. The judges’ panel included: Tirthankar Das, a filmmaker and music composer from New Jersey; Sankar Gangaikondan, a singer and musician; Shaila Verma, Artistic Director of Shaila School of Dance in Massachusetts; Dr. Kavita Pattani, Mrs India USA 2017; and Namita Dodwadkar, Mrs India USA 2014 and Mrs India Worldwide 2016.
The crowned winners of each category are:
Miss India Connecticut – Alka Marala
Miss Teen India Connecticut – Nikitha Kikanamada
Mrs. India Connecticut – Rekha Gopal
Miss India Connecticut 1stRunner Up – Daman Brar
Miss Teen India Connecticut 1stRunner Up – Archita Mundrathi
Mrs. India Connecticut 1stRunner Up – Vidhi Dave
Miss India Connecticut 2ndRunner Up – Radhika Rathore
Miss Teen India Connecticut 2ndRunner Up – Athulya Narayanan
Mrs. India Connecticut 2ndRunner Up – Mamatha Puttaswamy.
Here are some other subtitles given in each category, including Miss/Teen/Mrs. Social Media – Radhika Rathore, Athulya Narayanan, Debashree Rupalin. Miss/Teen/Mrs. Congeniality – Radhika Rathore, Nikitha Kikanamada, Mamatha Puttaswamy. Miss/Teen. Talent – Alka Marala, Athulya Narayanan. Miss/Teen/Mrs. Photogenic – Alka Marala, Dhruvi Patel, Nidhi Sinha and Miss/Teen/Mrs. Viewer’s Choice – Alka Marala, Archita Mundrathi, Mamatha Puttaswamy.