The model man...
Photo: S. Subramanium.
Rajneesh Duggal , winner of the Grasim Mr. International title at Intercontinental The Grand in New Delhi.
BUDDING MODELS are eager to know the attributes required for making it to the top. If one evaluates the success of the winner of Grasim Mr. India, Rajneesh Duggal, one finds that this has probably to do - apart from his self-belief in his own abilities - with spirituality and a strict vegetarian diet. Rajneesh, who has done about 70 shows with leading designers like J.J.Valaya, Tarun Tahilani and Ravi Bajaj, is aiming for the coveted title of Grasim Mr. International.
He says, "I stopped eating onions and garlic too after becoming a disciple of Mathura's Narayan Maharaj. Every day I meditate for 15 minutes in my Kailash Colony house."
He doesn't think this is a quality but his strict training - taking lessons in English diction from elocutionist, Sabira Merchant, dancing under supervision of choreographer, Shamak Dawar and receiving physical training from instructor, Micky Mehta - helped him pip 28 contestants to the post.
Looking completely comfortable at New Delhi's Intercontinental The Grand, he epitomises equanimity and sincerity towards his craft.
He has kept his ambition of possessing a degree in business administration in abeyance so that he can consolidate his position on the fashion firmament.
"Prasad Bidapa taught me a lot. Resistance training by Micky like push-ups, abs building have made me shed four kilos. I am more focussed on muscle definition rather than muscle consolidation. Merchant's speech deliverance and pronunciation has helped. Emphasis is on mannerism and etiquette."
To make him shed his inhibitions and become a carefree guy rather than a reticent person, Merchant also made him emote as a lover or rebellious character. Kevin, from UK theatre, made him do warm-up exercises.
Is he apprehensive of being pitted against foreign contestants? "Not at all. Right now I am having single-minded determination to win the title. I have to concentrate on my weaknesses. I want to add some more bulk and be positively motivated."
What about general knowledge? "I am going through the book, `Who Moved My Cheese'. To keep myself up-to-date with current affairs I browse newspapers and Net. The jury doesn't ask questions of intellect like queries asked in `Kaun Banega Crorepati'. One has to have presence of mind."
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