Mahesh and Namrata met for the first time in the summer of 2000, during the mahurat of the film Vamshi. But it wasn’t until the end of the film that they fell in love. “The mahurat meet was very brief. We started dating towards the end of the movie,” says Namrata.
The couple got married in 2005. “I was shooting the whole night before for the film Athadu. I finished the shoot and flew down to get married,” says Mahesh.
Adds Namrata, “I was busy till the week before the marriage, as I was trying to finish all my assignments. I really had no time. But then all the arrangements were done by my sister and brother-in-law and my parents.”
Mahesh says, “I was not at all nervous. My only concern was, since it was not a publicised affair, how would the outside people react?”
“It was a simple ceremony and at the same time it was a private affair. That is something which I cherish, because here principally when you go for a wedding, people known to the family turn up in such a huge scale that you lose those moments in the crowds,” recalls Namrata.
Looking back at the favourite memory of the wedding, she says, “Saat pheras. Even though it was a Telugu wedding and the pundits from Tirupati were chanting mantras in Telugu, they took out time to explain each phera to me and my family in Hindi. I felt that was really sweet.”
When both people in the relationship are famous, it can be difficult to fit two egos and careers inside one house, but Mahesh and Namrata are great examples of making it work.
Mahesh credits Namrata for keeping him grounded and believes their relationship is strong enough as it is. He says, “Namrata is a real person, what she feels is what you get, no frills attached. She keeps me grounded.”
And Namrata adds, “His ability to leave all his work outside the house. You don’t see these qualities in most actors. When he is at home, he is a father and husband. It’s a great personality. His sense of humour is what attracted me towards him in the first place.”
Successful couples have the ability to solve problems and let it go. So, how do they overcome disagreements? “We don’t have many disagreements thankfully. Even if we do, we talk it out and find solutions that are agreeable to both of us,” says Mahesh.
Namrata adds, “We find a practical and logical solution if there is something that has gone wrong. Usually disagreements are few, more about kids. It’s trivial to be honest.”
Despite their busy schedules, how have they kept the spark ignited? Mahesh laughs and Namrata responds, “Love is very subjective. It grows in that space more and more. I don’t think there is any strategy. It’s pretty much unconditional. We take off sometimes for impromptu vacations, the moment Mahesh is free, and I join him even if I have work.”
Coming into paradise
The couple, who has been married since 2005, has two children — Gautham and Sitara. Says the actor, “You come home to a houseful of love and happiness.”
“The best part of being married is to be a family. I think marriage when we were without kids was a fabulous experience, just being together. The next phase is when we have kids who are phenomenal. It completes everybody. I don’t think there is anything beyond this. It completes your life,” reveals Namrata.
Marriage is not without conflict, but at the same time it’s about keeping everything running smoothly. She explains, “It requires a lot of effort. When Mahesh is not around for weeks together, I have to take care of everything, kids, home. But the fact that I am able to survive and not feel alone is very challenging. It’s about a healthy companionship and being true to each other.”...