Gokulchand Temple, Bankura, West Bengal: The Story Behind

Built by Bishnupur’s ruling Malla dynasty in 1643, this can be a conventional pancharatna temple with its ornamental columns and turrets positioned over its conventional four-sided curved roof. Apart from predating the Bishnupur temples, Gokulchand can be the biggest temple in all the district looming 64ft above the bottom. The temple advanced sprawls over 20,000sqft and is a serene, well-preserved slice of historical past with out a single plastic wrapper, selfie-happy vacationers or another Twenty first-century intrusions. 

A natmandir or efficiency corridor with arched gateways stands throughout the principle temple construction. The complete advanced is surrounded by fortified partitions and an overgrown tulsi mancha occupies a nook together with a nondescript tube effectively. (The latter is an especially helpful supply of crystal clear ingesting water for there aren’t any outlets shelling out mineral water bottles in these elements). The stairwells and balconies of the natmandir, although worn, are maintained effectively sufficient to have the ability to navigate one’s strategy to the roof to get that excellent vantage of all the temple in addition to Bengal’s rural idyll that stretches out past.

Gokulchand Temple’s restoration is an ASI success story and one spearheaded by none apart from Rakhal Das Banerji, the archaeologist most famously related to the discoveries at Mohenjo Daro. It is thru his efforts that the as soon as ruined temple was dropped at public consideration within the Twenties and it was lastly taken over by the ASI and restored to its present kind within the Nineties.

A stroll round the principle temple’s perimeter yields a more in-depth take a look at the magnificent terracotta artwork depicting gods and their myths on the partitions. While the stone reduction beneath shade is brushed with the occasional cobweb, these uncovered to the weather glisten with the wetness of a latest spot of rain. The unique Krishna idol has been relocated to the Malla dynasty’s dwelling in Bishnupur, befittingly, a easy {photograph} stays for the on a regular basis prayers to maintain the temple practical. Every yr, throughout  Holi and the Rathayatra, the idol is introduced again for a grand puja. 

The Gokulchand Temple is forlorn and sumptuous all of sudden. It is a poetic smash of time but in addition restored into a gift the place it stands awaiting new goal. 

Gokulchand Temple, Gokulnagar, Bankura, West Bengal 722138.