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NAR

Location:
Nar is located at 22°28' North latitude and 72°42' East longitude in the Anand district, Gujarat, India. It is located along the Western Railway’s Anand-Khambhat rail-line.

History:
There are two folktales about the existence of Nar. According to the history about Jains, Navdhar, of Maurya Dynasty, established the town in Vikram Samvat 203, Chaitra Sud 2, Thursday. Another folktale indicates that original name of the town was Narangpur which was established by Narsingh in Samvat 802, ie thirteenth century. Mojority of the population of Nar consists of Patidars. Over hundred Patidar families follow Jainism since last five generations.

There are three monuments in memory of warriors. One is located on the road to Khodiar Talav, second on the west bank of Malav Talav and third near the high school. The one near the high school has an incription “Samvat 1765, Jain Sud 7, Tuesday”

In Samvat 926 Rangba, daughter of Vaccha Patel married Sarbhanbha Desai of Savli. Patels of current six Khadkis (family house) are the descendants of Dhanabhai Patel. One of the prominent names of Gangadas who is remembered in the region along with Vir Vasandas of Virsad. In Samvat 1757, Bhagwandas, son of Narerdas and nephew of Gangadas married Taraben, daughter of Vir Vasandas. In 1782 Taraben, Shiv follower became a widow in 1782 and built a Mahadev. Later Mahatma Gandhi’s Statue was installed near by. During this period then known as Narangpur was ruling the surrounding 49 villages. Based on discovery of some remains, it is believed that there was a fort. Mahot Patel was the administrator of the town but was ruled by Kshtriyas. Gangadas and Narerdar were also leading figures during this time. When the Kshtriyas murdered Mahot Patel, Gangadas pleaded the case to the Governor in Ahmedabad.  The governor issued an order to punish the culprits and Mahot Patel was cremated on the bank of river Vatrak. Gangadas was saddened at the merciless killings of Rajput families by the Governor’s army and intervened to save the children and women with the help of Narerdas. Gangadas later took control of the town to establish peace but himself murdered in Agra. The King in his honor in Agra built Gangeshwer Mahadev temple.  

Nar is unique in a sense that it had erected three statues of national leaders almost 50 years ago! Sardar Patel statue is at Malav Bhagol , Gandhiji statue is at Shri Dahiben Public Library and Shri Jawaharlal Nehru statue at Vad Talav across the B.R.L. High School.

Population:
The village has a population of 30000 within a 3 square mile area. The local population consists of Patidars, Brahmins, Baniyas, Kshatriyas and Christians. But still, the Patidars are the majority community of this village. Over half the population now lives in foreign countries. For the most part, the Patidars from Nar are in African and Middle Eastern countries, the United Kingdom, Canada and the Unites States of America. These expatriates have contributed significantly to the prosperity of Nar.

Education:
The Baroda State Government established the first preliminary school, Nar Primary Kumar Shala (Boys School), on 1st October 1876. The extension was made a few years ago by with a generous donation from Raj Ratna Shree Purushottambhai T. Patel. A Girls School, Nar Kanyashala, was established in 1887 with a generous contribution from Chaturbhai Kashibhai Patel. It is worth noting that the Government of India gave the national award to Ms Savitaben Parekh, the principal of the school. Shri Nar Kelavni Mandal (Education Board) now manages these schools including the Kindergarten, High School, Technical Vocational School, and Physical Education School.

There are two public libraries and one of them is for women only. Sewing classes are conducted by the women’s library.

The Sanskar Mandal and College Students Union are providing valuable services by organizing social and cultural activities. They also provide free textbooks to college students who are in need of assistance.

Health and Human Services:
The Dahiben Bhikhabhai Patel maternity home was built with a generous donation by Bhikubhai J. Patel of Ode, in memory of his daughter Dahiben in 1946. A government hospital was built in 1936.  A medical trust was established in 1938 to manage these facilities. Nar Seva Samaj was established in August 1976 by the late Shri Chaturbhai Kashibhai Patel, as a charitable trust to promote the Cultural, Social, and Educational needs of Nar. This trust assists local medical centers in distributing free medicine to the needy, and interest free loans where appropriate.

Nar now has “clean” streets laid with stones and a sewer system connected to most houses for water disposal. Thanks to huge efforts and personal sacrifices by Shri Chandubhai Patel of Dallas, Texas who stayed in Nar for months at a stretch to ensure the completion of the project. He is also pursuing another major project of drinking water since the current water supplied to homes contain higher level of salt.

Business and Industries:
Nar is primarily a farming community with small industries such as Rice and Pulse Mills, Ginning press, Flour mills, Saw mills, and a dairy. Once, people from Nar had a very big hand in providing milk to the city of Mumbai as many of the cattle farms (tabelas) were owned by Nar people Nar has a cooperative bank as well as branches of other commercial banks to support the needs of the local farmers and businesses.

Religious and Cultural Institutions:
This is predominantly a Hindu community with several Temples, such as Bhankhraj Mahadev, Gupteshwer Mahadev, Bhatikhatri, Khodiarmata Temple, Ambaji Temple, Ramji Mandir, Swaminarayan Temple, Kabir Shaib Mandir, Radha-Krishna Mandir, Goverdhannath Temple Gayatri Temple, Shri Jalaram Temple and Ranchhodji Temple. The sculpture and artistic decorations in case of the Jain and Pranamy Mandir are outstanding. There is Madhavananda Ashram, Modh Chaturvedi Brahmin Dharamshala.   

Sports are an integral part of Nar. Youngsters are very much interested in Cricket and Volleyball and have won numerous trophies at several levels. Pravin Rasikbhai Patel who now lives in Atlanta was a captain of B.J.V.M (Commerce College) at Sardar Patel University in Vallabh Vidyanagar, under his leadership the team won the university championship in the late sixties.

Nar has three bhagols (major intersections), three lakes and four towers.

Nar has taken a leadership position in the Samooh Lagna where many marriages are performed at one place at the same time with limited number of people attending which saves money and prevents the waste of money and food; the bride and her family is also helped with generous donations from all POSUN people. It also follows strict rules about prohibiting dowry (paithan) and all extravegance typical with ‘old time’ marriages.