Bishnupur, Bankura

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Rasmancha, Bishnupur, Bankura.jpg
Jor Bangla Temple (arches) Arnab Dutta 2011.JPG
Radhashyam Temple at Bishnupur 2.jpg
Jor Mandir 22 Arnab Dutta 2011.JPG
Dalmadal Arnab Dutta 2011.JPG
Bishnupur montage
Bishnupur is located in West Bengal
Location in West Bengal, India
Bishnupur is located in India
Bishnupur (India)
Coordinates: 23°05′N 87°19′E / 23.08°N 87.32°E / 23.08; 87.32Coordinates: 23°05′N 87°19′E / 23.08°N 87.32°E / 23.08; 87.32
Country India
StateWest Bengal
 • TypeMunicipality
 • BodyBishnupur Municipality
59 m (194 ft)
 • Total67,783
 • OfficialBengali, English
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
ISO 3166 codeIN-WB
Vehicle registrationWB
Lok Sabha constituencyBishnupur
Vidhan Sabha constituencyBishnupur

Bishnupur is a city and a municipality of Bankura district in the state of West Bengal, India. It is the headquarters of the Bishnupur subdivision. It is famous for its terracotta temples Malla Shree Krishna Raslilla and the Baluchari sarees.


Jor Bangla temple of 16 century in Bankura
Stone chariot of Bankura
Terracotta relief in temple of Bankura
Terracotta motif

Bishnupurwas ruled under the Gupta period by local Hindu kings who paid tribute to Samudra Gupta[citation needed]. Following a long period of obscurity, where the land oscillated between being a minor independent principality and a vassal state. The land is also called Mallabhum after the Malla rulers of this place. The Malla rulers were Vaishnavites and built the famous terracotta temples during the 17th and 18th century at this place. The legends of Bipodtarini Devi are associated with Malla Kings of Bishnupur.[1]

Bishnupur (the distance from Kolkata is 132 km), now the headquarters of the subdivision of the same name in Bankura district, is a seat of crafts and culture.

For almost a thousand years it was the capital of the Malla kings of Mallabhum, of which Bankura was a part, till their power waned during the times when Mughal Empire weakened under the last monarchs of the dynasty.

The patronage of Malla king Veer Hambir and his successors Raja Raghunath Singha Dev and Bir Singha Dev made Bishnupur one of the principal centres of culture in Bengal. Most of the exquisite terracotta temples for which town is justly famous were built during this period.

Mrinmoyee temple of kings is treated as a valuable historic place.

Apart from the unique architecture of the period, Bishnupur is also famous for its terracotta craft and its own Baluchari sarees made of tussar silk.

Royal patronage also gave rise to Bishnupur Gharana (school) of Hindustani classical music in late 18th-century[2] and the Bishnupur school of painting.
Since 1997, the temples of Bishnupur is on UNESCO World Heritage Site's Tentative list.


Bishnupur is located at 23°05′N 87°19′E / 23.08°N 87.32°E / 23.08; 87.32.[3] It has an average elevation of 59 metres (194 feet).


As of 2001 India census,[4] Bishnupur had a population of 61,943. Males constitute 50% of the population and females 50%. Bishnupur has an average literacy rate of 69%, higher than the national average of 59.5%; with male literacy of 77% and female literacy of 61%. 11% of the population is under 6 years of age.

CD Block HQ[edit]

The headquarters of Bishnupur CD Block are located at Bishnupur.[5]

Police station[edit]

Bishnupur police station has jurisdiction over Bishnupur municipality and Bishnupur CD Block. The area covered is 365.73 km2 with a population of 138,786.[6][7]


Bishnupur is a region where Bengali has gained importance. Bengali is the primary dialect and main language of this region. More than 90% of the people of Bishnupur are Bengali.


There are a number of well-known schools and colleges in Bishnupur. For higher education, there is a college named Ramananda College under Bankura University. There is also a music college named Ramsharan College of Music. The names of the schools are:

  1. Bishnupur High School (Bankura)
  2. Bishnupur Mahakuma Madhyamik Vidyalaya
  3. Bishnupur Krittibas Mukherjee High School.
  4. Sibdas Central Girls' High School.
  5. Bishnupur Parimal Debi Girls' High School.
  6. Kusumbani Jamundas Khemka High School.
  7. Bishnupur Mission High School.
  8. Bishnupur Public School-High, a Co-Ed. English Medium (Recognised by West Bengal Board of Secondary Education as a Listed English School Under School Education Department Govt. of West Bengal)
  9. Bishnupur Public Primary Teachers' Training Institute, A D.El.Ed. College(Recognised by N.C.T.E. & Affiliated to West Bengal Board of Primary Education)
  10. Bishnupur Public Institute Of Education, A D.El.Ed. College(Recognised by N.C.T.E. & Affiliated to West Bengal Board of Primary Education)
  11. Bishnupur Public Private I.T.I., An Industrial Training Institute (Affiliated to DGE&T / N.C.V.T. Govt. of India, New Delhi & Accredited by Quality Council of India and Approved by Directorate of Industrial Training Govt. of West Bengal)
  12. Bishnupur Public Institute of Engineering, A Polytechnic College (APPROVED BY A.I.C.T.E. & AFFILIATED TO W.B.S.C.T. & V.E. & S.D)

There is also an engineering college, Mallabhum Institute of Technology; a government poly-technique college named K.G. Engineering Institute; and two private polytechnic college named "Mallabhum Institute Of Polytechnic (MIP)"


Bishnupur has a 250-bedded District hospital and One Super-speciality Hospita with ICU Dep at Bishnupur Rasikganja .[8]


Bishnupur is reasonably well connected via roads. Due to its importance as a tourism destination, it is connected to almost all major places of Bengal. Long distance buses connect Bishnupur to places like Arambag, Durgapur, Asansol, Kolkata etc. There are regular and frequent bus services available between Kolkata and Bishnupur. The buses usually leave Kolkata from the Esplanade bus stand. The journey takes about 4 hours and 45 minutes.

Bishnupur is well-connected by rail to the rest of the country via Kharagpur and Adra. Express and mail trains ply between Kolkata and Bishnupur on a regular basis. The Rupashi Bangla Express, Aranyak Express and the Purulia Express are the most convenient trains to reach Bishnupur from Kolkata; these trains come via Kharagpur(Midnapur) and take approx 3:30 to 4:15 hours to reach Bishnupur from Kolkata.

Within the city of Bishnupur, private auto-rickshaws and cycle-rickshaws are most convenient mode of communication. Recently CNG autos have been introduced plying through various parts of the town. These vehicles are environment-friendly, non-polluting, convenient, less time consuming and cheap mode of travel.

Nearest International Airport is at Dumdum, Kolkata (Netaji Subhash International airport) which is 140 km away; a smaller private air strip at Panagarh belonging to the Indian Air Force is rarely used. A new airport in Andal has come up (90 km from Bishnupur).

Bishnupur is now a junction, it connects Tarakeswar (E.Railway) via Arambag


The Bishnupur Mela is held every year around the last week of December, in Raj Darbar. Later on Highschool Ground and from Now it is held at Nandalal Temple Premises. Now in 2018 the test of the Bishnupur Mela is totally changed. A big thanks to the administration for such innovative idea to keep Bishnupur Terracotta Temples at the backdrop of the main stage.This year Bishnupur mela is inaugurated with the Gharana Music sung by Some renowned persons from Bishnupur Gharana. In this year 2018 a fashion show with Baluchari Saree is introduced to promote Baluchari Saree at international platform. Besides artisans got a huge income by selling crafts from the stalls of Mela. A recent addition is Bishnupur Utsab, held after the Mela. It is a classical music and dance festival in recognition of the 'Bishnupur Gharana' in music.[9] It was stopped after 2012 but It started again on and from 2/2/2018 at Rashmancha.

Temples and other places[edit]

There are many such temples which stand testimony to the exquite craftsmanship of the artisans of the region. The temples were crafted from the local laterite and brick. The temples are covered with terracota tiles depicting scenes from the epic Mahabharata. The temples are located in Bishnupur and across many other small villages in the Bankura district.

  • Rasmancha(oldest brick temple with an elongated pyramidal tower Surrounded by hut-shaped turrets)
    The inner part of Rasmancha, Bishnupur, Bankura, West Bengal, India
  • Pancha ratnaTemple of Shyam Rai
The wonderful Raschakra of the Syamaraya temple or Pancharatna Temple, established in 1643. There is no better terracotta work than this in Bengal.
  • Jorebangla Temple of Keshta Rai
  • Raghunathjiu Temple
  • Madanmohan Temple
  • Dalmadal Kaman
  • Lalgarh
  • Lalbandh
  • Acharya Jogeshchandra Museum
  • Gumgarh
  • Pathar Darwaja (Main Gateway of Bishnupur)
  • Garh Darwaja (Small Gateway of Bishnupur)
    Garh Darwaja (Small Gateway of Bishnupur), Bankura, West Bengal, India
  • Stone Chariot
  • Nutan Mahal
  • Bishnupur hawa mahal
    Hawa mahal
  • Memorial of Shrinibas Acharya
  • Gour-Nitai Temple (Tejpal)
  • KeshabRai Temple (Patpur)


A school of music, called the Bishnupur Gharana, was established here in 1370 A.D and flourished under the patronage of the Malla kings. The school hit its peak in the 16th and 17th centuries. This style of music is rooted in the Dhrupad style and is still being kept alive in local academies of music.Pakhwaj, Sitar, Esraj comprise the main instruments. Bengali Ragpradhan is one of the Classical items of this gharana.


Terracotta is characteristic of Bishnupur. Apart from the temples, terracotta pottery, artifacts and even jewelry made in this very traditional material are famous. The most famous of the terracotta products are the hand made beautiful jars, disks and the more famous of them are the terracotta horses, elephants, Ganesha, and Nataraj. But nowadays the skilled artists and potters are not present and also they make different products like faces, men, wall hangings and also the mini sized Dal Madal Kaman (cannon). The potters here derive their inspiration from the glorious history of kings, soldiers, and wars.'Dokra', one kind of metalcraft is also famous. Bishnupur is also famous for Baluchari Sari [10] and Mallabhum Sari made of Tassar silk and was for almost a thousand years the capital of the Malla kings of Mallabhum.[11][12] Woven on Jacquard punch-card looms, these sarees have episodes from the Mahabharata woven into the border and pallu. Bellmetalware, conch-shell and terracotta jewelry is also available here. The "Dashavatar Taas", kind of playing cards depicting ten avatars of Hindu god Vishnu, is drawn by hand. It is a rare artistic piece not to be found anywhere else in India.

Terracotta horse[edit]

Panchmura (West Bengal), May 9: Popular Bankura horse that evolved as the symbol of West Bengal over a period of time besides gaining a special place in the national crafts museum, is dying a slow death at the very place it derived its name from. Bankura horses are terracotta horses that were once used more often for religious purposes, now they are used as a decorative item here. This art originated in Bankura district of West Bengal. These horses are known for their symmetric shape and rounded curves given to their body. The Bankura or Panchmura horse gained popularity among the art lovers since it acquired a place in the works of renowned painter M. F. Hussein.[13]

Festivals and fairs[edit]

There is a snake festival in August, Ultorath and the Bishnupur fair in December. Also durga puja and kali puja or diwali is celebrated with pomp here. The Rajbari Durga Puja (also popular as Mrinmoyee Maa er pujo) was started on 994 AD, which makes it the oldest Durga Puja in entire Bengal region including today's Bangladesh,Odisha

and Tripura.[citation needed]


During the period 1990–2010, the 175-year-old Bishnupur Municipality was controlled by INC. From 2010 it is controlled by TMC.

Image Gallery[edit]


  1. ^ Östör, Ákos (2004). Play of the Gods: Locality, Ideology, Structure, And Time In The Festivals Of A Bengali Town. Orient Blackswan. p. 43. ISBN 81-8028-013-6.
  2. ^ Samira Dasgupta; Rabiranjan Biswas; Gautam Kumar Mallik (2009). Heritage Tourism: An Anthropological Journey to Bishnupur. Mittal Publications. pp. 110–. ISBN 978-81-8324-294-3. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  3. ^ "Maps, Weather, and Airports for Bishnupur, India". Retrieved 22 March 2018.
  4. ^ "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 16 June 2004. Retrieved 1 November 2008.
  5. ^ "District Census Handbook: Bankura" (PDF). Map of Bankura with CD Block HQs and Police Stations (on the fifth page). Directorate of Census Operations, West Bengal, 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
  6. ^ "District Statistical Handbook 2014 Bankura". Tables 2.1, 2.2. Department of Statistics and Programme Implementation, Government of West Bengal. Archived from the original on 29 July 2017. Retrieved 14 October 2016.
  7. ^ "Bishnupur PS". Bankura District Police. Retrieved 14 October 2016.
  8. ^ "Status of Health and FW Services in Bankura District". Chief Medical Officer of Health, Bankura. Retrieved 11 December 2016.
  9. ^ "westbengaltourism". Archived from the original on 9 September 2015.
  10. ^ Baluchari, Sarees. "Baluchari Silk Sarees".
  11. ^ Pandey, Dr.S.N. (1 September 2010). West Bengal General Knowledge Digest. Upkar Prakashan. p. 28. ISBN 9788174822826. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  12. ^ App, Urs. The Birth of Orientalism. University of Pennsylvania Press. p. 302. ISBN 0812200055. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  13. ^ "Famous Bankura horse of West Bengal may become history". Retrieved 22 March 2018.

External links[edit]