MUMBAI: Bollywood actress, Dia Mirza debuted in the industry after her win in Miss Asia Pacific 2000. She, however, says she never believed in competition while she participated.
Speaking about her journey from where it all began, she said, "It feels almost surreal to look back 20 years. I was so young when it all happened," she reminisced on an experience that made the young Hyderabad girl a household name."
She also talked about how the start of the year 2000 influenced her, "The year 2000 marked a new millennium, bringing with it a sense of hope, promise and excitement."
However, the most shocking part is the fact that she never imagined herself to be winning a beauty pageant.
I happened to be spotted by a modelling agent who offered me a part-time job at 16. Everything happened very quickly after that -- advertising campaigns, fashion shows, editorial shoots. One thing led to another and I was selected from Hyderabad for the Miss India pageant," she recalled while expressing how it all happened out of the blue for her.
She also revealed how her family reacted, "I remember my mother being really surprised that I wanted to take part!"
Dia says that it was a completely new experience for her as she had never left her city, Hyderabad before the opportunity knocked on her door.
She further said, "It was a journey that brought love and encouragement, but was still very daunting to go through alone. As an individual, I have never believed in competition, so for me it was about putting my best foot forward, enjoying myself and learning as much as I could."
Mirza was the second runners up during Miss India 2000 and ended up winning Miss Asia Pacific.
She also revealed her experience when the result got declared, "We were announced the winners, crowned, wore our sashes, took that final walk, and had thousands of lights and cameras flashing in front of us - through all of that, I remember thinking ''where are my parents? I want to meet them''! At that moment I truly realised how happiness can be truly cherished when you have your family to share it with."