Russian prison wardens dazzle in beauty pageant

12 finalists are hoping to be crowned 'lock-up lady of the year'

News Desk June 11, 2021
(From left) Darya Strogonova, Veronika Shved and Anastasia Okolelova. PHOTO COURTESY:

In a surprising development, Russia is organising a beauty pageant for female prison wardens.

The Russian Department of Prisons has named the beauty competition 'Miss Panel System Contest 2021', which is organised by the Federal Department of Prisons.

According to Arab News, voting is underway to find the country’s most beautiful prison guard.

The 12 finalists, each hoping to be crowned lock-up lady of the year, were chosen from 100 contestants who each won their local competitions, Russian Today reported.

According to Mail Online, the contestants were allowed to submit photographs of themselves in their prison uniform and in evening wear that would be judged by a mostly-male panel as well as in an online poll before a winner is picked.

Also read: Russian policewomen battle it out on Instagram for most 'beautiful officer' title

Among the contestants is senior lieutenant Anastasia Okolelova, from Samara, said she had dreamed since childhood of “wearing shoulder straps” and serving in the prison force.

The Russian prison service is not the first government agency to use a beauty pageant to promote its work.

In 2019 police officer Anna Khramtsova won a similar competition when the National Guard held the ‘Beauty of Rosgvardia’ pageant.

Although all did not go according to plan for Khramtsova – and after a brief flirtation with social media fame, she was eventually fired after apparently breaching security by posting a photograph taken inside a facility.

The Miss Penal System contest is the latest initiative from the Federal Penitentiary Service – others included the instillation of British-style red phone boxes to decorate the room inmates used to make calls to the outside world.

Voting closes on June 11 when the world finds out which of the 12 finalists who let down their locks, leaving inmates a little happier about being cell-bound, is crowned the winner.


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