Exclusive: Namrata Shirodkar talks about Mahesh Babu and 16 years of their togetherness
Namrata Shirodkar is considered a bit of an enigma. The former Miss India and filmstar is known to maintain a reserved demeanour. But, the moment she steps out for an event in the city, hand-in-hand with the superstar, she sure makes head turn, and fans can’t help adore Tollywood’s sweethearts — Mahesh Babu and his wife.
And with every passing year, the love that they get from the fans seem to grow. It would not be an exaggeration to say that Namrata and the Prince of Tollywood are the poster children of evergreen love. Hence, we surely couldn’t think of anyone better in The City of Nizams whom we wanted to speak with before Valentine’s Day. The elusive Namrata gave us a rare insight into her life with the superstar.
She spoke to us from Dubai, where superstar Mahesh has been shooting for the film, Sarkaru Vaari Paata. Although Namrata will be in the city this February 14 with Gautam and Sitara and will miss Mahesh, she says her plans are in order. “I would be spending Valentine’s Day with my kids this year because Mahesh is shooting in Dubai,” says the 49-year-old, before delving into what keeps their marriage working well despite long stretches of time apart and their individual schedules which are often chock-a-block. In their relationship spanning almost two decades, they have learnt that honest conversation is the key, “Mutual respect, trust, honesty and being transparent with each other is so important. And of course, it goes without saying that the love Mahesh and I share has only gotten stronger,” shares the Vaastav actress who married the superstar in 2005. They dated for five years before getting hitched, making it almost two decades of knowing each other.
Making a move
Their love seems as fresh as ever despite 16 years of marriage. In the last few years, with the Bharat Ane Nenu star and his wife actively taking to social media, the fans have been able to see more snapshots from their lives. They know that the couple have eyes only for each other. The Mumbai-born actress, who had a successful stint in Bollywood shifted to the city post-marriage. She has since then made The City of Nizams her home. That must have been a daunting step to take, but she has often confessed in her other interviews that when you know you are in love, you know. In fact, she met her superstar husband on the sets of a film they were shooting together. We asked her if she had fallen for Mahesh when she first saw him. “It was when we went on a 52-day long shooting schedule in New Zealand for our film, Vamsi. We became really good friends. By the end of the schedule, I think we both knew that we wanted to be with each other for the rest of our lives.”
A full life
Namrata tells us that she shares a full life replete with love. They are parents to two adorable kids who look like spitting images of their father — 14-year-old Gautam and Sitara born in 2012. The couple celebrated their anniversary just a couple of days ago on February 10. Namrata posted a much loved-up snap with Mahesh and wrote, “Easy peasy 16...Counting our blessings together...forever (sic). Happy Anniversary MB. More and More love to you.” The Tollywood star also posted a picture with his wife and wrote, “Happy 16th NSG...To forever and beyond with you (sic).”
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However, no mention of Valentine’s Day can be complete without the discussion of self-love. Hence, we ask the Anji actress to share the mantra for how she solidifies her relationship with herself. “I am trying to put myself first. It is a tough thing to achieve when you work from home, have kids, a husband and pets. But nevertheless, I am always trying to find some me time for myself,” says Namrata. She also taught herself new skills and strengthened her virtues as well. “I learnt a couple of things. To be patient, to reflect on my thoughts, to keep things simple and above all, gardening.” Well, if Namrata has been working on herself, it is certainly showing!
The former supermodel has amassed over two million followers on Instagram. Her followers can come across her barely touched up photos where she looks radiant and glowing. “Positive affirmations keep me motivated. You become the person that you tell yourself you are,” shares Namrata, adding that her days are mostly packed. “I wake up and pray. After my workout is done, I have to manage the kids, home affairs and in all of this, I balance my workspace because I have a home office. So yeah, I definitely have my plate full.”
Overall, Namrata is in a happy place and it shows. What also helps her stay content and at peace with herself is her ability to adapt to change. “During the last year, especially while we were going through the lockdown phase, I learnt how to adapt to change, to be grateful for all that I have, and celebrate little moments of joy and life every day,” shares Namrata, while telling us what she did with Mahesh and children to make sure every day there was something to look forward to. “We spent some quality time with the family doing interesting activities like swimming and playing board games.” Quality time is rare for the Ghattamaneni family, given that Mahesh is busy on shoots and often has to travel. So Namrata shares she tried to make the most of the quality time she got with Mahesh, Gautam and Sitara during the lockdown.