Banner Lanamai James of Manipur wins Rubaru Mr India ‘Youth Icon 2022’


Imphal: A 22-year-old Banner Lanamai James from Manipur’s Senapati district has bagged the first Rubaru Mr India Youth Icon 2022 on Wednesday evening.

The grand finale of the 18th edition of Rubaru Mr India 2022 championship was held at Crowne Plaza Chennai Adyar Park in Tamil Nadu. This is for the second consecutive year that a candidate from Manipur has brought home the prestigious Rubaru Mr India award.

A native of Lower Khamsom village under Karong constituency, Banner also won the best National Costume in the pageant competition. He proudly showcased the festive costume of the Poumai Naga tribe during the national costume segment of the pageant.

Last year, Songashim Rungsung, the first Rubaru Mr India winner from Manipur’s Ukhrul district, also won this same award. This put Manipur in the top rank at the national costume segment of the pageants in India.

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Congratulating the newly title holder, the pageant organisers wrote on Facebook “India here comes our first Rubaru Mr India Youth Icon 2022 winner from Manipur, @banner_lanamai_james. Many congratulations to the young gentleman.”

According to his video presentation for the costume competition, the entire attires for the competition was hand woven by his mother. 

“Every pattern and motifs in the costume tells a story and every colour used reflects the beauty of the nature. The traditional headgear signifies the sunrise bringing light and energy, the celebration of life,” said Banner.

When I am wearing this exuberant costume, I am confident to stand in the presence of gods and goddesses,” he added.

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Currently based in New Delhi, Banner Lanamai James, son of Karaiba Pungdina and late James Lanamai, belongs to the Poumai Naga community in Manipur. He is a freelance model, and is pursuing his master’s degree in English literature and linguistics. He is a strong advocate of a healthy, toxic free lifestyle and is actively involved in raising awareness on the serious issue of substance abuse. He has also been a part of several campaigns that focus on educating people about the harmful impact of such toxic substances on health. 

Along with that, he is also an environmentalist and has taken part in several tree plantation drives in his state. At the age of 22, he was one of the youngest candidates at this year’s Rubaru Mr India championship. His victory at the Rubaru Mr India championship has made Manipur one of the best performing states in the Indian men’s pageant sector.

Rubaru Mr. India is India’s biggest and oldest running pageant for men. The contest was established in the year 2004. 

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