Everyone is talking about Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s (SLB) magnum opus ‘Bajirao Mastani’.
SLB is a stickler for the minutest details and in his two and a half hour epic he has covered all the important aspects of Mastani’s colourful world.
Well, not all but almost all!
According to Mumbai-based water connoisseur Naveen Luthra, who has researched Mastani and has a huge collection of exclusive photographs and other memorabilia on the subject, what SLB and Deepika Padukone probably do not know is that Mastani had a huge obsession for water – to drink and bathe in. An obsession to the extent of madness!
Mastani dwelled at Mastani Mahal in Shaniwarwada Fort, which is today at Kothrud – a Pune suburb. Thirty five kilometres from Mastani Mahal, there is a spring. Mastani used to only drink and bathe from the water of this spring. Every day a horse-rider laden with water vessels would go to this particular spring to fetch water to cater to Mastani’s craving. It is fabled that one day the ropes holding the water vessels broke and the rider returned empty handed. Mastani was furious and punished the rider by keeping him thirsty and without a drop of water for a whole week, explains Luthra whose Mulshi Springs is the very spring from, which Mastani used to source her water for drinking and bathing.
Interestingly, this very same spring is now used for bottling water commercially. Mulshi Natural Spring Water, a high-end bottled spring water is sourced from this very same spring and sold in Europe, Australia, the US and of course India. Apart from Mulshi being served at super luxury hotels and restaurants all over the world, it is a preferred water of the royalties of today – the Ambanis, Godrej, Wadias, Salman Khan, Shilpa Shetty and many of the who’s-who of India, savour Mastani’s favourite water everyday – Mulshi Springs.
History has an association of spring water and beautiful women. Another Indian beauty Noor Jahan used to bathe from a spring in Beheramgala in Kashmir. Emperor Jahangir named this spring Noori Abashar after the name of his favourite queen.
Cleopetra and beauty are synonymous. Cleopetra too used to bathe and drink water from a particular spring. Closer in time the exclusive spa Baden-Baden in Germany with its natural spring had Queen Victoria as an annual visitor. Henry Ford, Mae West, Babe Ruth and a host of prominent personalities were regular visitors to a spring at Mount Clemens, Michigan.
The question, which comes to mind is the association of natural spring water with good health, beauty and well-being. Dr Anand Basu an expert and water connoisseur has the answer. “High quality natural spring waters have sodium and calcium bicarbonates present in them. These enhance re-circulation of blood in the body, which ends up by not only getting your skin to glow but also in generally keeping you fitter and feeling better.”
Cleopetra and Mastani may have not known Dr Basu’s explanation during their time, but Shetty Raj Kundra, Twinkle Khanna and a host of other beauties who drink Mulshi must be in knowledge of this age old secret. Mulshi Springs is India’s only bottled natural spring water certified by a dozen or so international testing labs in Germany, US, UK and Australia to be 100 percent pesticide free – something that SLB missed out in his fantastic magnum opus ‘Bajirao Mastani’.