Sushmita Sen arrives in Manila; looks forward to seeing former Miss Universes

MANILA — Miss Universe 1994 Sushmita Sen arrived in Manila on Thursday. She will be among the judges of the 65th Miss Universe pageant slated in the country on Jan. 30.

The beauty queen expressed her joy to come back in the Philippines, saying it’s like her second home.

Sen said the hospitality of Filipinos didn’t change, but was surprised to see a lot has changed in the country’s main airport (Ninoy Aquino International Airport).

She earlier told her companions, “When we land in Manila, I will show you how the airport works.”

”Suddenly, when we came here, I didn’t recognize anything,” Sen said, adding that the airport has changed so much.

The Indian film actress, model was also remembered for the question, “What is the essence of being a woman?” during the 1994 pageant.

When asked how would she answer the same question now, she uttered, “the origin of a child is a mother, and is a woman,” and emphasized that she understands that better now.

Sen has two daughters. “That (motherhood) is a lifelong commitment,” she noted.

Meanwhile, Sen said she is looking forward to seeing former Miss Universes. “I know Dayanara (Torres) is here. I was also hoping to see Charlene (Gonzales),” she said.

Torres is currently in Manila to be one of the judges in the pageant’s preliminary competition.

She was the 1993 Miss Universe who crowned Sen 23 years ago.

Charlene Gonzales, meanwhile, represented the country during the 1994 pageant. Though Sen admitted she’s not friends with her, she said she will never forget how nice and helpful Gonzales was to her.

Sen also said she’s very thankful for the opportunity to come back to the Philippines, and for the opportunity to help crown the next Miss Universe. Ma. Cristina Arayata/