Miss Universe 2020: Miss Mexico Andrea Meza wins title, India’s Adline Castelino bags fourth spot
The Miss Universe 2020 crown was won by Miss Mexico Andrea Meza. The Miss Universe pageant announced on Sunday (Monday morning in India) that Miss Mexico Andrea Meza has bagged the title for this year.
Andrea Meza, who is the 69th Miss Universe winner, beat more than 70 contestants from across the globe. After Andrea earned the title, she walked the catwalk tearfully before going back to the other competitors for a group hug. Andrea was seen wearing a sparkling red evening gown.
Andrea is the third Mexican to win the Miss Universe pageant. Miss Brazil Julia Gama and Miss Peru Janick Maceta del Castillo won the second and third spots respectively.
The Miss Universe contest 2020, which took place in Florida on Sunday night, was cancelled last year for the first time due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Former Miss Universe contestants Cheslie Kryst, Paulina Vega, and Demi-Leigh Tebow were competition analysts and commentators while a panel of eight other women chose the winner.
Meanwhile, India’s contestant Adline Castelino (22), who is reportedly from Karnataka’s Udupi, came fourth in the contest.
During the Miss Universe pageant, Adline was commended for her neutral response in the question-answer round. She was asked, “Should countries lockdown due to COVID-19 despite the strain on their economies, or should they open their borders and risk a potential increase in infection rates?”
To this, Adline had responded by saying, “Good evening universe. Well, coming from India and witnessing what India is experiencing right now, I have realized something very important, that nothing is more important than the health of your loved ones. And you have to draw a balance between economy and health. And that can only be done when the government works with the people hand-in-hand and produces something that will work with the economy. Thank you.”
Adline also won hearts in a saree that she wore during the National Costume round. The outfit was designed by Hyderabad-based designer, Shravan Kumar and is said to be inspired by India’s national flower, lotus.
Other significant moments from the Miss Universe pageant include Myanmar contestant Thuzar Wint Lwin’s speech urging people to speak up against the military coup in their country.
In the video message for the competition, Thuzar said, “Our people are dying and being shot by the military every day. I would like to urge everyone to speak about Myanmar. As Miss Universe Myanmar, since the coup, I have been speaking out as much as I can.”
Thuzar did not make it to the last round of the Miss Universe competition, but won the award for Best National Costume, which was based on the ethnic costume of ‘Chins’ from northwestern Myanmar. As she walked onstage in her national costume, she held up a placard that read, ‘Pray for Myanmar.’
On the other hand, Singapore’s contestant, Miss Singapore Bernadette Belle Wu Ong used the Miss Universe platform to speak out against racism and anti-Asian hate crimes.
She was seen wearing a red and white cape with the words, ‘Stop Asian hate’ painted on it. “What is this platform for if I can’t use it to send a strong message of resistance against prejudice and violence! Thank you #MissUniverse for giving me this opportunity!” Bernadette wrote on Instagram alongside a picture of her outfit.
Bernadette’s ensemble, which was inspired by Singapore’s national flag, had been hand-painted by Paulo Espinosa and was designed by Arwin Meriales.
Over the years, the Miss Universe competition has gravitated more towards women empowerment and activism and shifted from pure entertainment. The pageant had earlier received criticism in the past for objectifying its contestants.