In 1994, two beauties Sushmita Sen and Aishwarya Rai competed against each other to earn the title of Miss India. While Sen was crowned the winner of the pageant, do you know she was about to take back her name from the competition because Aishwarya was participating? As many as 15-20 girls had taken their name back because Aishwarya was a part of the pageant and no one believed that they would be able to defeat the most beautiful woman. However, Sushmita won the title. Talking about the beauty pageant to Karan Johar on Koffee With Karan, Sushmita had recalled how Aishwarya was fabulous on the stage.
Sushmita Sen said, "I don't compare myself to Aishwarya's performance, I think she was fabulous on stage. My shooting star went right over my head. When you are competing for anything, it is not just your hard work, because there are 20-30 girls who put in equal or more amounts of hard work."
After Miss India victory, Sushmita Sen went on to become Miss Universe and Aishwarya Rai was crowned as Miss World in the same year.
In another interview, Sushmita had recalled how she participated in the beauty pageant. She said that she took back her name because of the fact that Aishwarya was so beautiful and was already renowned. However, it was her mother who scolded her for doing the same and said that you accepted your defeat without even trying. Sushmita said, "My mother said ok fine let her win. If you think that she's the world's most beautiful then loose from her. What's the point of losing from someone else? Go give it your best shot."
She revealed that it was Aishwarya who had won all the prelims which was why she was convinced that she's going to lose the competition. Moreover, when Aish's name was announced as the first runner-up, Sushmita started to cry thinking that she had not even made it to the runners-up. But when her name was announced as the winner, she could not believe herself.
During the last segment of the competition, Aishwarya was asked, "If you have to look for qualities in a husband, would you look for the qualities in Ridge Forrester from ‘The Bold & Beautiful’ or in Mason Capwell from ‘Santa Barbara’?" Her answer was, "Mason. They do have a lot in common, but from what we see, Mason has a very caring side to him, and a terrific sense of humour. And that really gels with my character."
On the other hand, Sushmita was asked the question, "What do you know about the textile heritage of your country? How old has it been and what do you prefer to wear personally?” Sushmita answered, “I think it all started with Mahatma Gandhi’s khadi. It has gone a long way since then, but the basics of Indian textile heritage has been from there."
Meanwhile, Sushmita Sen has been away from the silver screen for quite a long time but made her acting come back last year with her first web series called Aarya.