Situated on the northeast corner of the Belur Chennakeshava Temple complex, this rectangular-shaped pond is a Kalyani, a temple tank. Note that the temple tank, a common feature in Hindu temples, is also known by many other names, including Pushkarini and Kunda. The official name of this temple tank is Gajagonda (Elephant Pond).
According to an inscription, Hoysala King Ballala II commissioned this temple tank in 1175 CE and was named Vasudeva Sarovara. Vasudeva is synonymous with Vishnu because Krishna, the eighth avatar of Vishnu, is known by this name (also his father’s name). Note: The term Sarovara means lake in Kannada.
As you can see, the tank is within a walled enclosure. Inside the temple courtyard, two specially built walls enclose it on the western and southern sides, and the temple prakara (i.e., a protective wall around the temple) surrounds it on the eastern and northern sides. The entrance to the tank is through a pavilion built in the middle of the western wall. Check the A view from the southeast side page.
The image shows a view from the northwest side of the tank. As you can see, there are two mini shrines built on the terrace above the stairs. Access to the pond is through steps, which become narrower as you go down.
– Belur Chennakeshava Temple – Bracket Figures
– Belur – Chennakeshava Temple – Navaranga
– Belur Chennakeshava Temple – Garbhagriha Outer Wall
– Kappe Chennigaraya Temple
– Somanathapura Keshava Temple
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