The Mrs Sri Lanka 2021 beauty pageant came to a messy end after the proclaimed winner was stripped of her crown, and even reportedly injured, while onstage just shortly after her coronation due to false claims that she was a divorcee.
Beauty queen Pushpika De Silva’s reign as Mrs Sri Lanka 2021 only lasted for a few minutes during the program.
Right after her victory walk, which was being televised on national TV, the 2019 winner grabbed the microphone and said De Silva can not be awarded because she was a divorcee.
"There is a rule that prevents women who have already been married and are divorced, so I am taking steps to make the crown go to second place," 2019 winner Caroline Jurie said onstage.
Video footage shows Jurie removing the crown from De Silva’s head, then transferring it to the first runner-up.
Some reports indicated a brawl erupted, resulting in head injuries to De Silva, but this was not shown on the available video.
De Silva posted about the incident on Facebook with a caption written in the local Sinhala language. A rough Google translation shows she mentions a certain injury to the head.
“I am not a divorced woman. As of this writing, I responsibly state that I am not a divorced woman. If I am divorced, I challenge them to submit my divorce papers,” De Silva said.
“A real queen is not a woman who snatches another woman's crown, but a woman who sets the other woman's crown,” De Silva added.
A report by a Sri Lankan news outfit quotes a statement from the Mrs. World organization saying that Jurie will be made to apologize.
“We will review the aforementioned incident and we’ll be taking steps, as deemed appropriate, based on the outcome of our assessment,” said the statement as quoted by News First.
De Silva will also reportedly take legal action after being humiliated at the event.
BBC, meanwhile, quoted the national director of Mrs Sri Lanka World, Chandimal Jayasinghe, saying that the crown will be returned to De Silva.
"We are disappointed," Jayasinghe said. “It was a disgrace how Caroline Jurie behaved on the stage and the Mrs World organisation has already begun an investigation on the matter."