Miss India, 21-year-old actress Harnaaz Sandhu, was crowned Miss Universe early Monday in a live show in the Israeli coastal city of Eilat on the Red Sea.
Sandhu prevailed against 79 competitors from countries around the world.
Miss India Harnaaz Sandhu competes during the beauty pageant. Photo: Ilia Yefimovich/dpa
In a profile on the pageant website, Harnaaz is described as "a strong advocate for women's empowerment, particularly their constitutional rights to education, careers, and their freedom of choice."
It was the 70th Miss Universe pageant. The event began at 3 am (local time) to be broadcast live in prime time on US television.
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, only viewers with a "green pass," showing they had either recovered from the coronavirus or had been vaccinated in the last six months, could be present at the show.
Mexico won 2020
In May, then 26-year-old Andrea Meza from Mexico won the title of Miss Universe 2020 in the US state of Florida.
The competition had been postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic from the previous year.
Miss Paraguay, Nadia Ferreira, competes during the beauty pageant in Israel. Photo: Ilia Yefimovich/dpa