Indian transsexual Naaz Joshi has been crowned Miss World Diversity 2019 in Port Louis, Mauritius. With this, she has become the first person ever to win the title for three consecutive years as she won the same title twice before in 2017 and 2018.

“Winning the crown gives me the power and responsibility towards society. With such a huge responsibility, I aim to work towards bringing transgender into the mainstream. I want that everyone should accept us as we are without any discrimination,” said Naaz after winning the title, TNIE reported. She wore a blue lehenga and choli to present herself as a powerful Indian Goddess, who stands for ‘shakti’ – the feminine source of power and women empowerment. She was up against 14 other international contestants.

Naaz was born as Aizya Naaz Joshi in Delhi’s Malviya Nagar. She said that fact that she was born in a different gender than what she identified with made it unsettling for her parents to keep her with them so they sent her to Mumbai to live with her maternal uncle’s family. She joined a course in NIFT and topped it after which she joined an MBA course in marketing from IMT through correspondence as the institute didn’t offer her a regular course.

Winning the crown gives me the power and responsibility towards society. With such a huge responsibility, I aim to work towards bringing transgender into the mainstream. I want that everyone should accept us as we are without any discrimination. – Naaz Joshi

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She worked for a few years in the fashion industry but soon quit. “When I decided to undergo a change, my own so-called friends left me. I also worked as a cabaret dancer at night in order to feed myself. I went through so much emotional distress that I tried committing suicide thrice but failed,” she told Transgender Feed.

In 2013, Naaz went for her sex reassignment surgery and started her modeling career. “The bright side came when Donald Trump (who owned Miss Universe pageant till 2015) changed the rules in 2012 that allowed transsexuals to participate in Miss Universe beauty pageant. That’s when I decided to try my hand at modeling.”

Naaz Joshi Miss World Diversity
Naaz Joshi on the cover of Tehelka (Pic by InUth)

The bright side came when Donald Trump (who owned Miss Universe pageant till 2015) changed the rules in 2012 that allowed transsexuals to participate in Miss Universe beauty pageant. That’s when I decided to try my hand at modeling. –  Naaz Joshi

After becoming a fashion designer, a model, it was time for her to become a cover girl—India’s first transgender to ever grace the cover of a magazine. Very few transwomen have been on mainstream magazine covers as yet globally and Naaz is one of them. In June 2015, she was on the cover of Tehelka magazine and her story was featured by Indian and World Pageant website.

The beauty pageant winner is also a passionate social activist trying to reduce stigma around trans people in our Indian society. She has worked with Dr Udit Raj, MP, on educating girls in villages about their rights.  Apart from Miss World Diversity, Naaz has also been crowned Miss Republic International Beauty Ambassador 2017 and Miss United Nationals Ambassador.

Picture credit- Odisha TV

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