Imlibenla Wati has been selected from over 890 contestants from the North East to represent the region in the Ru-Ba-Ru Miss India Elite contest, 2015. Besides her, two contestants from Assam, Nandita and Beauty Begam were chosen to participate in the national contest to be held at Delhi in the first week of October under the theme “Let’s make female foeticide a history”. Imlibenla stated that it was quite a shocking and a happy moment to win an entry into the Miss India Elite. “When our efforts are not in vain and when we get a positive feedback on what we have tried to achieve, we obviously feel elated”, she articulated.
Aben, as she is commonly known, is presently the youngest title holder of Miss Nagaland who was crowned in the year 2012 at the age of 17. She held the title of the first runners up of Miss Mokokchung the same year. She was the subtitle winner of Miss Perfect 10 in both Miss Mokokchung and Miss Nagaland. Aben also won the Readers’ Choice in Miss Nagaland in 2012. In her own words, she is “spontaneous, frank, stubborn and walk the talk and those are pretty much reflected on what I wear, do or say.”
Hailing from the erstwhile “land of fashion and music”; presently and officially tagged as the “land of pioneers”, Mokokchung, Imlibenla from Changki Village spent her boisterous past with full of activities- footballs, drums, bikes, kick-boxing and other pastimes that would normally be related to a highly energetic guy. On being queried about her hobbies and activities, she replies that it’s good to be ‘Jack of all trade’ in the present scenario of our generation. “And moreover, when we are passionate about the things you do, everything falls into place like a jig-saw puzzle. You don’t have to handle. It’s just a flow I embrace. I am a sportswoman in the field, I go with the beat of the drums and when I walk the ramp I try to own the stage”, she replies expressively. She also gleefully recounts her mother reminding her how she refused to go to school with skirts. It amazes not only others but also herself that she has taken up modeling as a passion. Aben reveals her passion in modeling developed only after winning her first beauty pageant title.
She presently pursues BA LLB (H) at NEF Law College, Guwahati. Prasantt Ghosh, one of the judges for the North East region and a well-known fashion designer and choreographer in the North East, has high remarks for Aben and considers her highly talented. He affirms she is doing very well in the training and has high hopes for her. Ghosh opines that some personalities from Nagaland has made remarkable strides in the world of fashion and glamour at the national level and encourages other talented Nagas to venture out of the state as bigger and better opportunity awaits for those that dare and endeavor.
A couple of years back, debates on the involvement of Aben in elections were highly discussed in some circle. When queried regarding her participation in the election and other rumours thereof, this is what she had to reply-
“People’s love to concoct tales, making mountain out of a mole etc aren’t even near to what I really worry about. Indifference is the right counter I implement. Sometimes, lending deaf ears only prevents the thrash being talked about… The fact of the matter lies in me supporting a campaign during the last election which I felt was right then. My question is now- “Could our rights be curbed as to impose or throw certain selfish values that we are deemed a no brainer”? All I did was exercise my rights… When you see a candidate enthusiastic about helping with a zealous approach and a charismatic personality, of course, I would want to support and vote for him. For me, it’s either black or white. Being diplomatic here only implies dirty politics. I wonder if our rights have gone obsolete as clearly laid by our constitution. It still amazes me how the picture continues yet… “. Regarding the rumours and much exaggerated talks about her, Aben states that “Rumours are meant to break us. I get to hear different story every day which at times is hilarious but at the end of the day it’s just a rumour. I am quite used to it now. I will just end with this ‘God’s favour outweighs all opposition”.
This gorgeous brainy beauty had attended a national level science exhibition while she was in class 9 and also received the “student of the year” award while in class 12. As she now pursues BA LLB and simultaneously devoting her time, resources and energy in modeling, we asked her what her aim in life was. This is her response- “Having being born to a humble family and growing up through different phases of life, I had so many things in my bucket list and today the fact that I am taking up Law implies that I have always had an interest with law making and procedures that follow. Today I am studying law decisively but who knows what life has to offer? Destiny will decide. And there is a saying- “even clear water turns out to be a mirage”. So, time will definitely prompt me in realizing as to whether I am in the right path or not, I believe so.” While maintaining thus, Aben is determined that modeling will not be a journey she will be pursuing permanently.
She adds, “We should have our principles and maintain our integrity no matter which field you are in or whatever profession you choose”.
Right now, her focus is concentrated on the Miss India Elite contest. Three winners of Ru-Ba-Ru Miss India Elite contest, 2015 will enter the Super models of the world contests where participants will compete from 80 countries around the world. (Imogen I Jamir)