Manushi Chhillar, an Indian model and beauty pageant holder, was crowned Miss World 2017 on November 18, 2017, becoming the sixth Indian to bring home the coveted title. The winning answer that sealed Manushi's fate at the Miss World 2017 pageant and won hearts worldwide was driven by her love for her mother Dr. Neelam Chhillar. She was asked, "Which profession deserves the highest salary and why?, to which she replied, "A mother deserves the highest respect. It's just not about cash but also the love and respect that you give to someone. My mother has been a huge inspiration. It is a mother's job that deserves the biggest salary.
Apart from the Miss World title, Chhillar also won the Beauty with a Purpose (BWAP) award. For her BWAP project, Chhillar took up the cause to spread awareness about menstrual hygiene, an issue that’s often surrounded by silence and shrouded in myths. Her initiative Project Shakti was launched in Haryana, and for the same, she visited around 20 Indian villages, making a difference to the lives of 5,000 Indian women. Campaigns advocating lower taxes on sanitary napkins have the beauty queen's support. In an attempt to bring about social change, the pageant winner further wishes to use the Miss World platform to spread awareness about menstrual hygiene in the country.
Alongside her modeling career, Chhillar is also making a name for herself as a fierce advocate for feminism and women's issues. Prior to this, the 20-year old clinched the 54th fbb Colors Healthntrends Miss India 2017 title on June 25, 2017, where she represented her home-state Haryana as Miss India Haryana 2017. She completed her schooling from St. Thomas’ School in New Delhi. Chhillar always dreamt about getting up on the Miss India stage, till one day in class 9, when she chanced upon a picture of a foetus in the womb at the National Science Centre in Delhi.
Fascinated by it, she declared to her friends that she would become a doctor, just like her parents. A few years later, she appeared for the entrance exam to study medicine and cleared it too and now is currently studying at the Bhagat Phool Singh Government Medical College for Women in Sonipatand. Chhillar aspires to become a cardiac surgeon and wants to open a chain of non-profitable hospitals based in rural areas. Her father, Dr. Mitra Basu Chhillar is a scientist at the Defence Research and Development Organisation and her mother, Dr. Neelam Chhillar is an associate professor and department head of neurochemistry at the Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences.
A woman with multiple talents, Chhillar is also a trained Indian classical dancer, has a passion for outdoor sports such as paragliding, bungee jumping, snorkeling and scuba diving besides her other hobbies which include sketching and painting. She considers Reita Faria, Miss World 1966, the first Indian and Asian to win the Miss World crown, as her role model. At present, Chhillar is not keen on working In Hindi movies, however would want to seize an opportunity of working in a movie alongside Aamir Khan.
Following Manushi Chhillar's victory at the Miss World 2017 pageant on Saturday, Indian Congress leader Shashi Tharoor had tweeted, "What a mistake to demonetise our currency! BJP should have realised that Indian cash dominates the globe: look, even our Chhillar has become Miss World!" In response to that, the newly-crowned Miss World 2017 gave a graceful reply that even won Tharoor over. She tweeted, "Exactly @vineetjaintimes agree with you on this. A girl who has just won the World isn't going to be upset over a tongue-in-cheek remark. 'Chillar' talk is just small change - let's not forget the 'chill' within Chhillar @ShashiTharoor," After the backlash received from tweeple and also the National Commission for Women, Tharoor didn’t take long enough to issue an apology, saying, "Guess the pun IS the lowest form of humour, & the bilingual pun lower still! Apologies to the many who seem to have been righteously offended by a light-hearted tweet today. Certainly no offence was meant to a bright young girl whose answer i've separately praised. Please: Chill!."