The story of the Sir Sayajirao Boys and Girls Hostels begins well before the latter decades of the 20th century. Its origins lie in the Gaekwad dynasty, with the ruler of Baroda State, for whom the hostels were named. Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad III reigned from 1875 to 1939 and was a patron of education, establishing the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, and starting a vast education fund. The interest from this fund was made available for the building of colleges, hostels and other educational facilities. The story of these hostels is also the story of the connections of modern
Indian life. Of Ishwarbhai Patel, a school teacher hailing from a peasant community from Gujarat’s Charotar region, who became the bold and highly effective Vice Chancellor of Gujarat University; of K.K. Shah, the secretary of the Maharaja’s Educational Trust who later became the governor of Tamil Nadu; and of Hasmukh Patel, who shared both community background and values with Ishwarbhai.