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Unique Video: Reita Faria, First Indian To Win ‘Miss World’ Title In 1966

  • IWB Post
  •  March 24, 2015


Reita Faria is an Indian Doctor, ex-model and the first Asian to have won the Miss World title in the year 1966.

She remembers:  “Everything took place in just three months. I had just three pounds sterling as foreign exchange. There was no question of a wardrobe. There was no preparation on how to speak, stand or wear a sari as at present. I even had to borrow a sari and a swimsuit from Persis Khambatta before going. Later I purchased a pair of shoes and a swimsuit.”

Her red sari with golden zari-work bagged the Best Evening Gown prize.

She stunned her country wearing a bikini for a round.

Reita was offered good money to enter glam world but she denied it and went on to pursue her 1st love – medicine. She was only six months away from becoming a doctor when she decided to enter Miss World competition.

She says: “One does not enter a medical course without wanting to pursue it. This Miss World title was such a fleeting moment that I wasn’t prepared to let it change my life. I didn’t think it would suit me. It wasn’t what I wanted out of life. I wanted to help people. If I had got into show business or become an actress, I don’t know what my life would have been; it certainly wouldn’t have involved a one-to-one interaction with patients.”

Today she is settled in Dublin, Ireland, with her husband Dr. David Powell, kids and 5 grand-children.

Watch this video of British Pathé showing a young Faria posing in the swimsuit round:

But the question is – Is she happy with her choice of choosing a regular life over glamor and attention? She remarks: “I am delighted to be in this city to support the endeavor of setting up diabetes institute with the help of the Government and the erstwhile Travancore royal family. I have never regretted my decision.”

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