B.C.’s South Asian contestants for Miss Universe Canada discuss their heritage (w/gallery)

Published: May 22, 2014


Picture 1 of 11

Mina Khtaria

LARISSA CAHUTE
VANCOUVER DESI

The annual Miss Universe Canada pageant, which kicked off in Toronto on Thursday, is a true representation of the country’s multiculturalism.

Miss Universe Canada

Miss Universe Canada Sahar Biniaz. AFP/Getty Images

As more than 60 diverse Canadian women compete for the 2014 crown, Vancouver’s very own Miss Universe Canada 2012, Sahar Biniaz — who was born in India and raised in Iran — reflected on how her cultural background plays “a huge role” in her everyday life, which ultimately helped in her pageant success.

“You have to use it to your advantage and make sure to be very positive about it,” Biniaz said from her New York City home. “It represents multiculturalism — and that’s what Canada is all about anyway.”

Being born in India, she’s learned about tradition and respect for elders, while being raised in Iran has helped develop the “sense of gratitude” she has for being Canadian.

“Women in Iran can’t compete in pageants — if they do, they’ll be going to jail or even they can be killed,” said Biniaz. “In that sense, because I’m a Canadian, it really gives me a confidence that I’m not only doing this for me, but I’m doing it for so many other people around the world who might not have had this opportunity.”

And although Biniaz was unable to compete in the international Miss Universe pageant due to a foot injury, she was pleased the runner-up who took her place, Adwoa Yamoah from Calgary, was able to represent Canada’s multiculturalism as an African-Canadian.

Miss Universe Canada 2014 will be crowned Saturday night in Toronto.

A total of 15 women from B.C. have travelled to Toronto to compete for the Miss Universe Canada crown. Vancouver Desi caught up with B.C.’s four South Asian contestants to see how their culture influences them, while asking some pageant-style questions.

Click through the pages to find out what each contestant had to say.

Related stories:


Pages: 1 2 3 4 5

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,





Featured

A Bangladeshi policeman escorts Jikrullah, left and Ariful Islam, two among  three suspected of the killing of a blogger as they are presented before the media in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Monday, March 30, 2015. AP Photo/ A.M. Ahad

Blogger hacked to death in Bangladesh’s capital, 2 Islamic school students detained

JULHAS ALAM THE ASSOCIATED PRESS DHAKA, Bangladesh — A blogger was hacked to death by three men in Bangladesh’s capital on Monday, and two of…
Continue Reading »

In this photo taken in October 2012, Associated Press reporter Kathy Gannon, second from left, and photographer Anja Niedringhaus pose for a photo with Afghan police recruits at the main police training academy in Kabul, Afghanistan. AP Photo

Afghan police officer sentenced to 20 years for killing AP photographer and wounding reporter

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS KABUL — Afghanistan’s highest court has ruled that the police officer convicted of murdering Associated Press photographer Anja Niedringhaus and wounding AP…
Continue Reading »

desi-crime-sexual assault

Surrey man who pleaded guilty to mistreating sex trade workers should go to prison for 2-3 years: Crown

KEITH FRASER VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — A Surrey man who pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 14-year-old sex trade worker nearly 20 years ago and…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

U.S., Mexico sign climate co-operation deal as Canada stalls on UN emissions bid

By Bruce Cheadle THE CANADIAN PRESS OTTAWA — The Harper government is temporarily standing on the sidelines as international negotiations ramp up for a United…
Continue Reading »

US-Mexico sign climate co-operation deal as Canada stalls on UN emissions bid

By Bruce Cheadle THE CANADIAN PRESS OTTAWA — The Harper government is temporarily standing on the sidelines as international negotiations ramp up for a United…
Continue Reading »

desi-crime-sexual assault

Surrey man who pleaded guilty to mistreating sex trade workers should go to prison for 2-3 years: Crown

KEITH FRASER VANCOUVER DESI SURREY — A Surrey man who pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 14-year-old sex trade worker nearly 20 years ago and…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

World Cup final

Underarm incident recalled as Australia-New Zealand rivalry rekindles in World Cup final

STEVE MCMORRAN THE ASSOCIATED PRESS MELBOURNE, Australia — Relations between New Zealand and Australia at a political level have regained their natural cordiality in the…
Continue Reading »

Cricket World Cup

Clarke’s Australians prepare to take on unpopular role in the World Cup final vs New Zealand

JOHN PYE THE ASSOCIATED PRESS MELBOURNE, Australia — Win or lose, Michael Clarke and his Australian teammates are probably going to be portrayed as the…
Continue Reading »

India-Australia-weird news

Youth cut his tongue as sacrifice at an Indian temple for nation’s cricket victory

IANS Chennai – In a senseless act, a cricket crazy youth in Tamil Nadu offered the tip of his tongue as a sacrifice at a…
Continue Reading »

Freedom-Section 66A-India

Teenager shoots himself after father bans Facebook chat

IANS Lucknow - A 14-year-old boy shot himself Thursday after his father reprimanded him for chatting too often on social networking site Facebook, police said. The…
Continue Reading »

messy custody battle-desi lingerie model

Jeremy Renner’s messy divorce from B.C. model gets messier as custody battle rages

VANCOUVER DESI A B.C. woman who was married to Hollywood actor Jeremy Renner is being accused of being a gold digger and blackmailer who has…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

pakistani sex meera-Veena Malik

Gallery: Bollywood celebs in trouble with the law

ALMAS MEHERALLY VANCOUVER DESI Indian film actress Shruti Haasan has run into legal trouble after she pulled out of a signed contract, according to an…
Continue Reading »

Salman Khan-Bollywood

Bollywood actor Salman Khan denies he was driving or drunk during 2002 accident

IANS Mumbai – Bollywood actor Salman Khan on Friday told a Mumbai court, conducting the trial of the 2002 hit-and-run case involving him, that he…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood movie

Amitabh Bachchan: Balki challenges me with never-done-before roles

SUBHASH K. JHA IANS Mumbai – R. Balakrishnan and Amitabh Bachchan’s much anticipated third outing “Shamitabh” turned out to be a box office disaster, but…
Continue Reading »