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Govinda Temple at Narail

  • Published at 05:32 pm January 6th, 2020

Govinda Temple, locally known as Gobindo Debar Chaklanabish Jor-Bangla mandir, is one of the ten Jor-Bangla temples situated in Bangladesh.

The temple is situated in the village of Kotakol, Lakshmipasha in the Narail District. Satish Chandra Mitra in his book Jessore-Khulna Itihas mentioned that this temple was built in the 18th century by Ramachandra Chaklanabish, a Brahmin local elite and landowner. 

The temple consists of two adjoining Do-Chala hut type of brick-built structure on a single platform which gives the appearance of the letter ‘M’ if seen from the side. It’s a medium-sized Jor-Bangla temple measuring 14’-10” X 16’-5” X 14’-6”. It has a triple-arched entrance to the Mandapa and a single arched entrance to the Garbhagriha. Garbagriha has a door on its eastern wall for the priest to enter and on the western wall, there is a wooden framed window. Kiln burnt bricks have been used with the mortar for cementing for the construction of the temple. The facade of the temple is decorated with terracotta plaques. Terracotta bricks are used to cover the front and three other side’s walls are simple plaster covered. The entire front facade is ornamented with terracotta mouldings. 

Like the most 18th centuries temples, this temple was dedicated to Lord Krishna. As a result, scenes from Hindu epics and iconography associated with Vaishnavism has been used for temple decoration. Without that where the frieze begins has a peacock on a terracotta plaque.Moreover, two-horse figures are seen on the spandrel of the left and the right arch facing each other and they are separated with Purna Kalasha. Spandrel above the central arch contains two Garuda figures in kneeling position which with folding hands like a welcoming gesture and again a purna kalasha separating them. The four piers separating the spandrel section are decorated with geometric patterned ornamental bricks both placed horizontally and vertically. In recent years for the lack of proper maintenance and vegetation growth of saplings of tree posing a serious threat to the structure. 

As the temple was built in the early 18th century and the following centuries till the present day the temple lad witnessed many changes. Not only that it’s also significant evidence of our cultural biography and need to conserve and preserve this physical trace of our heritage.