Birla Mandir



The Birla Mandir has been built by the ‘Birla family’, the famous industrialist family of India. The construction of the temple began in 1970 and it took 26 years to complete the indelible structure. The temple was inaugurated on the 21st of February, 1996 by Dr. Karan Singh. The Pran Prathistha ceremony of the idols was done by Swami Chidananda Maharaj. The temple is dedicated to the consortium of Lord Krishna and his beloved Radha.

Victoria Memorial

The Victoria Memorial is a large marble building in Kolkata, which was built between 1906 and 1921. It is dedicated to the memory of Empress Victoria, and is now a museum under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture. The memorial lies on the Maidan and is one of the famous monuments of Kolkata .The Victoria Memorial’s architect was William Emerson (1843–1924).The design is in the Indo-Saracenic revivalist style which uses a mixture of British and Mughal elements with Venetian, Egyptian, Deccani architectural influences .The building is 338 by 228 feet (103 by 69 m) and rises to a height of 184 feet (56 m). It is constructed of white Makrana marble.

he gardens of the Victoria Memorial were designed by Lord Redesdale and David Prain. Emerson’s assistant, Vincent Jerome Esch, designed the bridge of the north aspect and the garden gates. In 1902, Emerson engaged Esch to sketch his original design for the Victoria Memorial. Angel of Kolkata atop Victoria Memorial

Atop the central dome of the Victoria Memorial is the 16 ft (4.9 m) figure of the Angel of Victory. Surrounding the dome are allegorical sculptures including ArtArchitectureJustice, and Charity and above the North Porch are MotherhoodPrudence and Learning.

The Victoria Memorial is built of white Makrana marble. In design it echoes the Taj Mahal with its dome, four subsidiaries, octagonal-domed chattris, high portals, terrace, and domed corner towers.

Belur Math

The design of the temple was envisaged by Swami Vivekananda, and the responsibility of the architecture was laid in his hands. The architecture and design of the temple ‘celebrate the diversity of Indian Religions’. When seen from different angles, the monument resembles a temple, a church and a mosque. The incorporation of architectural styles from different religions conveys the universal faith in which the movement believes in.

The main entrance of the temple is heavily influenced by the Buddhist styles of the Sanchi Stupa and the entry of the Ajanta Caves. The windows and the balconies draw from the Rajput and Mughal styles of architectural designs, while the central dome is derived from European architecture. Also, the ground plan is in the shape of a Christian cross. Mainly built out of chunar stone, the 112.5 feet high temple has images of Lord Ganesha and Hanuman, who represent success and power respectively, carved above the pillars of the entrance doors.

Fort William

The Fort is built of brick and mortar in the shape of an irregular octagon with an area of 5 km2 (1.9 sq mi). Five of its sides face landward, and three towards the Hooghly River. The design is that of a star fort, suited to defence against cannon firing solid shot, and dates from before the advent of explosive shells. A dry moat 9 metres (30 ft) deep and 15 m (49 ft) broad surrounds the fort. The moat can be flooded but is designed as an area in which to use enfilade (or flanking) fire against any attackers reaching the walls. There are six gates: Chowringhee, Plassey, Calcutta, Water Gate, St Georges and the Treasury Gate. There are similar forts at places like Thalassery in Kerala.

Dakshineswar Kali Temple

Built in the navaratna or nine spires style of Bengal architecture, the three-storeyed south-facing temple has nine spires distributed in the upper two storeys, and stands on a high platform with a flight of stairs, overall it measures 46 feet (14 m) square and rises over 100 feet (30 m) high.

The garbha griha (sanctum sanctorum) houses an idol of goddess Kali, known as Bhavatarini, standing on the chest of a supine Shiva, and the two idols are placed on a thousand-petaled lotus throne made of silver.

Close to the main temple are the row of twelve identical Shiva temples built facing the east in the typical aat-chala Bengal architecture, they are built on either side of the ghat on the Hooghly river. To the North east of the Temple Complex is the Vishnu Temple or the Radha Kanta Temple. A flight of steps lead to the columned verandah and into the temple where a silver throne rests with a 21+12-inch (550 mm) idol of Lord Krishna and a 16-inch (410 mm) idol of Radha.

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