Miss Universe Harnaaz Sandhu crowns Miss India successor Divita Rai

Rai, an architect and model from Mumbai, will represent India in the 71st Miss Universe pageant this year

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Divita Rai has been crowned Miss Diva Universe 2022 at a glittering awards ceremony in India.

She was crowned by Harnaaz Sandhu, the current Miss Universe titleholder and India's departing Miss Diva Universe 2021.

Miss Diva, or Miss Diva Universe, is India's national pageant and Rai, 23, an architect and model from Mumbai, will now represent India in the overall Miss Universe 2022 pageant.

The dates and location for the 71st Miss Universe have not yet been announced.

The event in Mumbai also crowned its representative to the Miss Supranational competition and Pragnya Ayyagari won the title of Miss Diva Supranational. She will go to compete on the international stage.

Miss Diva, established in 2013, is a part of the Femina Miss India pageant, which selects India's representatives for Miss Universe, one of the Big Four international beauty competitions.

Sandhu returned to Mumbai this weekend for the pageant, for which she wore a beaded dress by Indian designer Gavin Miguel.

Scroll through the gallery below to see photos of Harnaaz Sandhu winning Miss Universe 2021

Organisers said that as Sandhu "will be taking her final walk" as the national titleholder, the dress serves as "an ode to her beautiful reign".

The overall winner of Miss Universe 2022 is unlikely to be crowned until December or early next year, but contestants are already lining up to compete.

More than 35 countries, from the UK to Ukraine and Guatemala to Ghana, have named their representatives, with many more to be unveiled over the coming months.

Over at Miss Universe Bahrain, organisers have confirmed the winner's name will be revealed to the public on September 11.

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Updated: August 30, 2022, 6:48 AM