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Miss Universe 2021: Political rows or pandemic, what is the reason behind UAE, Malaysia skipping the pageant?

The beauty pageant, Miss Universe 20201 is slated to begin in a few hours today, on Sunday. However, has politics some role to play in dampening the mood of the audiences?

Miss Universe 2021: Political rows or pandemic, what is the reason behind UAE, Malaysia skipping the pageant? drb
Mumbai, First Published Dec 12, 2021, 7:04 PM IST
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Israel is playing host to the Miss Universe 2021 beauty pageant which is to be held in a few hours from now in its southernmost city, Eilat. This is the 70th Miss Universe pageant that is being held.

The judges at the show will have a tough time crowning the successor of Mexico’s Andrea Maza, declaring the winner of the three-hour-long show which will give the world its 70th Miss Universe.

To win the contest, participants have to go through various rounds that include giving personal statements as well as modelling in evening gowns and swimsuits. While the participants are gearing up for the big pageant that the world is waiting to watch, controversy has stuck the pageant.

Even though the participating nations and organisers have assured that the pageant will highlight global and political issues, audiences have been distracted by political controversies.

ALSO READ: Miss Universe 2021: Meet Harnaaz Sandhu, the woman representing India at the prestigious beauty pageant

There have been constant calls to boycott the pageant because of the Israeli settlement policy, which has taken a political dimension.

Among the participants is Bahrain’s Manar Nadeem Dayani and Morocco’s Kawtar Benhalima. It is for the first time that Morocco has sent its participant since 1978. Morocco sent its participant after it normalised ties with the host country last year.

ALSO READ: Urvashi Rautela meets ex-Israel PM Benjamin Netanyahu; gifts him Bhagavad Gita

Meanwhile, United Arab Emirates (UAE) which too had normalised its relations with Israel in 2020 was to send their contestant as well for the pageant. However, citing the ‘pandemic’, it went back on its decision, reportedly. Similar is the situation with Malaysia, a long-time participant of the pageant. As per reports, it was to send its national beauty, but Malaysia too seems to have cited ‘pandemic restrictions’ as the reason for not sending its participant anymore. 

However, as per the reports, there are some who believe that Malaysia’s decision might be based on a spat that took place between the two countries early this year that also led to a ban on Israeli athletes which barred them from participating in squash competition. Meanwhile, India’s Harnaaz Sandhu will be representing India at the pageant, and Bollywood actor Urvashi Rautela is one of the jury members.

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