Vishnu Temple (Bishnupur)
The conical roofed shrine is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Built in 1467, during the reign of King Kiyamba, the temple is interesting for its antiquity and Chinese design. Bishnupur is also renowned for its stone production.
The brick layers at corners towards the portico and the staircases have been oriented to make a parallel turn in such a way that these form a nice coherency of brick layers in niches. The temple body over its pedestal is in two storeys, the lower sanctum cube, lower Jangha and the upper sanctum cube, the upper Jangha.
All three walls of the east, the north and the west have corbelled arch. Below each corbelled arch is a window made to form three slits by placing two bricks longitudinally at a similar distance. The facade is facing south. Above the cornice is the four-walled upper sanctum cube. There are two false windows on each side. On the southern wall there is a single long rectangular and half-way perforated window.
The solidity of the interior walls blocks the holes. Therefore the holes do not serve the purpose of providing light to the sanctum hall. The roof above the upper Jangha is constructed in parabolic style and formed into a domelike structure by semicircular arches which converge at the base of the protuberance on the top.
The sanctum hall is square and it opens to the portico through a door opening. The Garbha Griha is provided with three windows on east, north and west sides. Internally each window is a square opening out through three slits to form the windows of the corbelled arch.
The walls of the sanctum hall are straight up to the point of the neck by perpendicular stepping up of the courses of brick layers. The entrance of the shrine is through two plasters of a rectangular opening which carries a corbelled arch with niches and achieved through fourteen courses of brick layers.
The original Walkeshwar Temple was destroyed by the Portuguese and the sand lingam is said to have jumped into the sea to avoid desecration.The temple was rebuilt by Rama Kamath in 1715, though the present temple dates only 1950's.
The shrine is the focus of much spiritual activity during Diwali, which celebrates Rama's homecoming. The Banganga tank, attached to the temple, is one of the antique structures in Mumbai.