Namaste! a Warm Welcome to the Global Website of the Mandhata Patel’s of the Navsari District of Gujarat, India, a place for the community to collaborate and work together for future progress and joint development to make the world a better place.

In Focus – Kantha Vibhag Friendship Trust and it’s Charitable Work over the years. – Lifetime Achievement Award for Contributions to Communities in the Kantha Vibhag Area.

pdf Download complete report below:    Kantha Vibhag Friendship Trust and it’s Charitable Work

Most of you have heard about the Trust and a great number of you have participated/attended its programmes in our District. The details below will familiarise you further with the activities of the Trust and its future plans.

In 1983 I went to India for the second time in thirty-five years. Most of the three weeks, I stayed in Navsari where my mother was hospitalised and a few days in my village. The thought that bugged me most at the time was that if my next visit should take another thirty-five years it would be too late for me to do whatever little I should do for my people in the villages.

During my visit one afternoon to the Gujarat Agricultural College at Char Rasta I met Dr. Ramanbhai Patel, a lecturer at the time, who volunteered to show me around. Although I met him for the first time and did not know him at all, I expressed my wish to do something on a regular basis in our villages. In specific terms I said in years to come I wanted to see four mango trees in four corners of each villages farm. He invited me to his house for further discussion.

The outcome of it was that when I returned to London I set up the above Trust with much wider aims than planting Fruit Trees so that various development projects can be undertaken as required. (Incidentally, it turned out that this young man Dr. Ramanbhai had married in Matwad to a relation of my sister. This helped me to persuade him to take on the responsibility himself ). It turned out to be one of the best choices for the Trust.

In 1984 I went back to India with all the relevant registration papers, opened a bank account in the name of the Trust and we were ready to launch our first Fruit Tree Planting Project soon after the next monsoon in 1985.

The aims listed in our Trust instrument were, advancement in health, education, culture and relief of poverty and any other purposes beneficial to the community. In the beginning, with the limitation of my own financial commitment we did not believe we would be able to do more than two or three programmes a year. When setting up a trust in UK it is best to list our aims rather widely as it becomes rather difficult to change afterwards.
And so within the limits of funding the projects developed over the years. For the past 35 years we have been doing some 15 to 20 programmes every year. Since the past few years, a number of supporters have come forward to sponsor a project or two each year.

Here is a brief list of what the Trust has done and in many cases is continuing to do. We continuously evaluate our work and if we find any of our projects has served its purpose or if the local needs have changed then additional new programmes are organised to meet the changed circumstances.

Fruit Tree Planting.

This was our initial project. 3 or 4 villages were selected and 20,000+ fruits trees were distributed for planting each year. Each household was given 5 to 6 saplings of different fruit trees. These included mango, chikoo, coconut, ramphal, lemon, jamrukh, papaya, dadam, saragvo, etc. for planting in their backyard or vado. Over the years we have planted 350,000 fruits trees in 56 villages.

Veterinary Camps / Livestock Management.

In association with Vasudhara Dairy and Agricultural College we organise 5-6 veterinary camps each year. Camps are held in open ground in one of the villages and people from 3-4 surrounding villages bring in their cows, buffalos, goats etc for treatment or diagnosis by the veterinary surgeons from Vasudhara Dairy. If injections or medicine are required this is supplied free of charge.
Instructions and posters for livestock management and recognising sickness are also given. This programme is very popular as keeping a cow or a buffalo is a very useful means of reducing poverty in a village.

Skills Development and Cottage Industrial Training.

Sewing has proved to be the most popular. Initially we sent volunteers to Government organised courses but as the demand increased we bought 10 sewing machines and engaged two instructors and with five machines in two villages started three months courses. 46 villages have been covered and everyone who wished to learn to sew has been taught and vast majority of them have been helped to buy a sewing machine at a substantial discount. This activity continues. Taking up sewing jobs in the city has been a handicap because of the compulsion to work late in the evening.

Hundreds of young ladies have gone through our weeklong Beauty Parlour training. Some of them are practising and earning good money.

Flower arrangement, Biscuit making, and making plastic dinner dishes courses are regularly organised.

The Trust regularly organises courses on Motor-rewinding, Tractor maintenance, Brick laying, Plumbing and basic electric rewiring and TV and Refrigerator maintenance etc,.

All the courses we run are at no cost to the participants.

National Lottery Fund, UK.

Having built up an excellent track record of over twelve years of poverty alleviation and skill training for the benefit to the whole family, the National Lottery Fund in UK awarded us £25,468 to be used over a five year period. This helped us cover a wide area and more activity.


The Trust does not make a public appeal for funds at any of our programmes so no one need fear that you will be pressurised to part with your money if you attended one of our programme.

Yet, many of our people do sincerely want to do something for our people in India. When they see for themselves the excellent way this Trust functions and approaches us to help we organise for them a platform. The Trust will carry out all the background work and the sponsor personally or through his representative perform the desired charitable work and pay direct to the supplier.

A number of our sponsors have been with us for many years and sponsor a programme or two every year. To name a few, they are:

Amratbhai – USA
Babubhai Rama – UK
Hirabhai Vala – India
Kishorebhai Parbhu – Canada
Mahendra Brothers – India
Naranbhai Makanji – India
P. U. Patel – UK
Ramanbhai Vallabh – India
Shantubhai Bhagwanji – UK
Vallabhbhai Budhi – UK and many others.

It is through their generosity that we have been able to provide rations to the poor, school kits to the children from poor and broken families, prizes to bright students, cultural programmes such as Bhajan and Ras Garba competitions and many more year after year.

The Trust is grateful to them all.

Future Plans

While continuing with all the above activities with more or less emphasis, we now need to put more weight on schemes that will help reduce unemployment and poverty among our youth and families if any permanent success is to be achieved.

Formal and free primary and secondary education in our villages have little to commend. Our students have difficulty crossing the standard 12 examinations. At this level and below the youths have little skill to join any worthwhile occupation.

From our own experience from the training sessions we run we find that those who go through our technical training and skill courses do much better in the job market.

Our plan now is to fit out and equip a workshop where we can professionally run a number of courses desired by the students and where they can contribute to the economy of the country. These courses will include, Instruments repair, Welding, Motor rewinding, TV and refrigeration repairs, etc.

Each of these practise and theory courses will be of three months duration qualifying for a recognised certificate. We hope to run two to three courses per year.

Our estimated cost for a three month course is Rs. 1,20,000.

We are looking for sponsors or better still supporters who will support a course every year. Even if you can sponsor a few students it will be a great help.

Do please contact me here in UK or Ramanbhai in India.

UK. Keshavlal J Patel. Phone: 020 8902 7034. email kjspatel@yahoo.co.uk
India. Ramanbhai B Patel. Phone: 02637 225 415. Mobile 93272 45447

Keshavlal J Patel

pdf 1. Download Gam Development Report – English

pdf 2. Download Gam Development Report – Gujarati

pdf 3. Download Kantha Vibhag Friendship Trust Report

pdf 4. Download Health and Healing, a series of articles on the Science of Health and Healing by Dr. Devananda Tandavan

pdf 1. Download Essence of Hinduism by Gandhi

pdf 2. Download 11 Vows of Gandhi

pdf 3. Download The Gita According to Gandhi (The Gospel of Selfless Action)

pdf 4. Download Gandhi’s book – From Yeravda Mandir

*** Featured Sites:
World Hindu News
Shodh Ganga – Reservoir of Indian Thesis
PDF DRIVE – Download Free PDF Files


Old Banyan Tree – Matwad



Purpose of the Website:

    1. First and foremost, is to recognize our roots and rich culture and heritage and social and community practices which is prevalent in all our communities around the world..
    2. Valuing and drawing up existing knowledge, skills and talents of the members of the Mandhata Community Globally.
    3.  Networking with each other, helping and guiding members and affiliated associations to optimise their abilities in order to fulfil set objectives.
    4. Addressing specific issues on their own merits and proven experiences.
    5. Develop and enhance the quality of life in our village areas in India by promoting education and development in all spheres of life.
    6. Record and Archive our roots and heritage and make it available globally.
    7. Promote Hindu Religious, Spiritual, Cultural and Social Practices
    8. Recognize and acknowledge achievements by our people around the world.
    9. Network and share Best Practices to ensure a peaceful and sustainable future for our communities around the world by living in harmony with people and nature and to protect the environment.
    10. Make positive contributions to society in general and to all the people and countries that we live in, around the world

[n.b. If you would like to contribute material for the site (photos or documents) or to become an Editor, please send a message to the email account mandhataglobal@gmail.com.]


Mandhata Community – Who are they ???

Mandhata Community refers to all the Koli Patel Community people who originate from the Navsari District of South Gujarat in India who migrated to various overseas countries.

The first Koli Patel immigrants from Navsari District are recorded to have sailed for South Africa in 1860. Over the years since then many more joined them. Others traveled to Fiji and then to New Zealand as early as 1902. During the War years and later large numbers traveled to East Africa.

Initially they came to work on the plantations and to build roads and railways. As years passed the vast majority of them settled in the countries where they worked. The first immigrants were all young men who went back to their local villages to get married and return to be followed by their wives a little later.

It is these immigrants who identified themselves as Mandhata Community. It is estimated that they number over a hundred thousand. UK has over 40,000 settled mainly in large cities and are now involved in almost all professions and in every industry, as in other countries too.

A vast number of us settled overseas are now sixth and seventh generation. Even the later arrivals boast third and forth generation. Yet we have continued close relationship with our extended families in India. Most of us visit regularly and many have built homes on their ancestral land.

This site highlights the history and life of the Mandhata Patel Community.

Site Specifics

This site has been built using a web content management framework, this will enable many people around the world to contribute content without any programming skills, all that is required is basic computer skills, this will ensure that content is contibuted by our communities around the world and also will ensure independance, so that no one person is tasked with the responsibility of maintaining the site. If you’d like to become a contributor, simply send an eMail message to our group email address, mandhataglobal.com. (exclude the period).

The site has been kept as simple as possible. Anyone with a basic knowledge of computing and internet will be able to interact. We are aware that a large number of you have a fund of knowledge to contribute to this site so that it can become a comprehensive repository of our history and heritage illustrated in words and pictures. In years to come this site would develop into a resource that our coming generations would refer to learn about their roots. We invite you to volunteer yourself as an administrator.

This site will be bilingual. We shall use English and Gujarati to reach as many of our people as possible.

On this site you will be able to read shorter articles in full, and where need be a .pdf version to copy. Large articles and other printed material will be in .pdf format for copying and printing.



When in the quiet of the night the question arises in your mind as to who your forefathers were? Where did they come from? How did they live? And you desperately want to explore your roots, this website may help you..

Perhaps the obvious starting point of this inquiry could be our own first hand knowledge of the stories told by our fathers and grandfathers of their experiences in their villages and how they made it to the foreign lands all over the world.

From their own lips we have heard how a few young men from the villages found construction jobs building railways in Surat and other nearby cities. Back in village for holidays their offers of help led more youths to join them. At work they came in contact with other peoples and particularly the English who valued their construction knowledge. This broadened their horizon. When opportunities came their way to work for railways in East Africa, plantations in South Africa and New Zealand many volunteered and packed their bags.

From their own lips we have heard how a few young men from the villages found construction jobs building railways in Surat and other nearby cities. Back in village for holidays their offers of help led more youths to join them. At work they came in contact with other peoples and particularly the English who valued their construction knowledge. This broadened their horizon. When opportunities came their way to work for railways in East Africa, plantations in South Africa and New Zealand many volunteered and packed their bags.

My paternal and maternal grandfathers both came to Mombasa, in East Africa to work on the Railways in 1919/21. They were perhaps among the first there and in their own words life was terrible. They lived in tents and were always in fear of the wild animals. For the first year or two they survived on boiled lentils with some pepper and salt. Later they grew chillies and ginger. Apart from bhajan singing in the dim light of a lantern, other entertainment was zero. Life in South Africa or New Zealand was no different. This was soon after the First World War period. Political power struggle was intense among the European powers and British were digging in wherever they went.

Period prior to the Second World War was the 2nd wave of immigration for our people. Passports were easily available and hundreds of youths leaving their families behind boarded sea-going clippers and left in search of a better life. A number of them perished and for the many who made it, life was very, very hard in every respect. Homesickness gripped many.

Read further about our History in the articles below.

 1. Read/Download the story of India’s Historic People by Keshavbhai J Patel.

 2. Read/Download the Early Katha Migration in Gujarati by Maganbhai B Karadia

 3. Read/Download ‘Our Finest Patriotic Years by Maganbhai B Karadia

 4. Read/Download ‘Koli Samaj, a Historical Perspective’ by Dr. Arjun Patel

5. Read/Download ‘ History of Koli/Kori/Mandhata People’


Sultanpur – Migrating Flamingos



Coastal Area new Dandi

Coastal Area near Dandi

Jespor 2

Jalaram Bapa Mandir

Bridge near Aatgam

Bridge near Aatgam



Keshavbhai meeting school children


New Avdafalia Shiv Mandir (2017)

Karadi School

Karadi School

School Children during Assembly - Karadi School

School Children during Assembly – Karadi School

School Children - Republic Day Celebrations

School Children – Republic Day Celebrations

Scan 4

Youth Leadership and Educational Seminar


 Shree Amratbhai Jerambhai Patel (in blue Shirt) And Shreemati Taraben Amratbhai Patel of Machhad are residents in USA. Both are generous donors of our Samaj. They visit Gam almost every year and sponsor a number of project in Machhad, other Kantha Vibhag gams. They are particularly interested in educational projects which we organise year after year. Their generous sponsorship help students with scholarships and various educational seminars for the students.  This Leadership Seminar was hosted by them and was held on 12th April 2014.




Babubhai Patel UK (MBE) Residence in Avdafalia

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Navsari Area





Gujarat Travel Map (click on map to enlarge)




List of Villages in Jalalpore, Navsari, Gujarat