Image Credit: Times of India
Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel
1875 - 1950

Early Life:

Sardar Vallabhai Patel was born on 31st October 1875 and educated at Nadiad High School and the Middle Temple, London. He began his career as a barrister.


His career in government began with his election to Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation in 1917 as the Sanitation Commissioner. He extended electricity, drainage and sanitation facility to all parts of the city and conducted major educational reforms including fighting for the recognition and payment of teachers. In 1920, Patel was nominated and elected as the President of the newly formed Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee.


Role in India’s Independence Movement:

Patel was actively involved in the Non-Cooperation, Satyagraha and Quit India movements and was at various points arrested by the British. When Gandhi was imprisoned in 1923, he led and organised the Satyagraha movement in Nagpur.


He was elected as the President of the Indian National Congress during the 1931 Karachi session, at which the Congress passed the historic Karachi Resolution.


Contribution to Constitution Making:

Patel was elected to the Constituent Assembly from Bombay on a Congress Party ticket. In the Assembly, he was an active member of the committees relating to minorities and fundamental rights. During the Committee Stages and the plenary sessions, he strongly argued against separate electorates.


Later Contributions:

During the framing of India's Constitution, he was the Home and Information and Broadcasting Minister in the Interim Government and played a critical role in negotiating with and integrating the 565 princely states into the Union of India. As the first Home Minister and Deputy Prime Minister of India, he organized relief efforts for refugees. He held the post of Minister for States after July 1947 and Minister of Home and States after 1948.


Patel passed away on 15th December 1950.

  1. Chairman, Sub- Committee on Minority Problems affecting East Punjab and West Bengal;
  2. Member, Advisory Committee;
  3. Member, Provincial Constitution Committee;
  4. Member, Steering Committee; and
  5. Member, States Committee.

Patel staunchly opposed having separate electorates, on the grounds that it would it cause division amoung Indian citizens.

  1. Sardar Vallabhai Patel: The Man Who United India, B Krishna (1996).
  2. The Sardar of India: Biography of Vallabhbhai Patel, Pran Nath Chopra.
  3. Patel: A Life, Rajmohan Gandhi (1991).
  4. India's Bismarck-Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Balraj Krishna.
  5. Integration of Indian States, VP Menon.