Know the real story of Heeramandi: Historical Inspiration Revealed

When filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali was making his film Devdas (with Shahrukh Khan, Madhuri Dixit, and Aishwarya Rai), writer Moin Baig came to narrate a story to him on the sets.

By Bollyy
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Know the real story of Heeramandi
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When filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali was making his film Devdas (with Shahrukh Khan, Madhuri Dixit, and Aishwarya Rai), writer Moin Baig came to narrate a story to him on the sets. This story was a synopsis of 'Heera Mandi', a market of prostitutes/courtesans based in Pakistan. Bhansali was impressed by that subject but could not muster the courage to work on that subject quickly. He got involved in directing other films. Now, instead of a film, the same story is going to be aired as a series on the OTT platform Netflix in 8 episodes from May 1, 2024. This is said to be the most expensive web series to date whose budget is said to be Rs 200 crore. In Bhansali's series, the story of the condition of pre-independence (1940) prostitutes, their social status, and their struggle have been presented in a very glamorized manner, the released glimpses and promos which are increasing the curiosity among the people.

Heeramandi: Bhansali's Portrayal of Historic Lahore

Heeramandi: Bhansali's Portrayal of Historic Lahore

First, know what is the actual ‘Heeramandi’ and where is it? Which Bhansali is calling his ambitious project so far? Heeramandiis a place south of Lahore in Pakistan whose history is believed to date back to the Mughal period. In the 15th-16th century, a settlement was established by the Mughals near Lahori Gate which was near the court. Servants etc. were kept here to work. This locality near the South Teksali Gate of Badshahi Mosque was named Heeramandi because here Maharaja Ranjit Singh's son Heera Singh had started a grain market which was then called 'Heera Singh Di Mandi', which later became 'Heera Singh Di Mandi'. Became famous by the name of ‘Heeramandi’. During the time of the Mughals, people from eastern countries also came and settled here.

Heeramandi: Bhansali's Tale of Cultural Heritage

Women who dance, sing, and perform Mujra were brought from Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, etc. to entertain the soldiers. Training in music, dance, thumka, and ghazal singing also took place here. There were no brothels or prostitution in those days. There used to be brothels for entertainment. This area also had a name like Noormahal. Later, when the British came, the condition of this colony started changing. This place gradually started turning into a brothel for the soldiers to have fun and debauchery. The shops here remained open throughout the day and in the evening, a market atmosphere was created in the balconies of the entire locality or town. Even then Heeramandi used to be the pride of this market. Here only dance, mujra, and singing took place and there was a ban on promoting prostitution. Bhansali has made 'The Diamond Bazaar' on the story of this Heeramandi.

"Heeramandi: The Diamond Bazaar" is dominated by Mallika Jaan (Manisha Koirala), whom Faridan (Sonakshi Sinha) has come to compete with. The other diamonds in this market are - Lajjo (Richa Chadha), Bibbojaan (Aditi Rao Hydari), Alamzeb (Sharmin Segal), Waheeda (Sanjeeda Shaikh), and Qudsia Begum (Farida Jalal). The male characters intertwined with the story of this web series will be seen on OTT. Other Bollywood stars who have played the role on screen are Fardeen Khan (Wali Mohammed), Tajdar Taha Shah, Shekhar Suman, Adhyayan Suman, etc. What captivating shadows and what kind of conflicts are there in the market of Heeramandi, which was called 'Anarkali Bazaar' during the British rule, can be felt by watching this artistic work of Bollywood's biggest showman Sanjay Leela Bhansali. Sanjay Bhansali and his team have spent eight years preparing to visualize a period drama concept of 'Bazaar-e-Husn' which was established five to six hundred years ago and can be understood only by seeing it.

-Sharad Rai

Read also:

#madhuri dixit #Aishwarya Rai #Shahrukh Khan #Heeramandi
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