New Engineering College (1947-1955)

The inception of this college is solely due to untiring and devoted efforts of Late Shri Dhondumama Sathe, a freedom fighter and a great visionary. He was also a reputed professional in construction with famous buildings like Sir S.P. College building and New English School building at Pune, Iron Education Society School building, Ruia College building and Jani building in Mumbai to his credit. During the period of his lifetime he also took an active part in the National Movement for Independence and many times plodded an imprisonment for six months or more.

Shri Dhondumama Sathe strongly believed, “Marathi people should achieve excellence in industrial and business fields”. He formed Maharashtra Technical Education Society and started the New Engineering College on June 26, 1947. The college started with a degree course in civil engineering with Shri G. N. Gokhale as its first Principal. With this small step began a journey in which many people joined and contributed. Over a period, the College acquired 102.50 Acres land in Vishrambag area of Sangli city. His Highness Chintamanrao Patwardhan, the Rajasaheb of Sangli helped the college in all respects in addition to donating Rs. 1 Lakh.

The College is Born :
The year 1947 has been eventful to all of us in more than one senses. It brought us independence-thanks to the Himalayan efforts of our great national leaders but to the people in the southern part of Maharashtra, this year has an added significance. Exactly at the same time when Mother India was experiencing the birth pangs of political freedom with a promise and potential for the total upliftment of the millions of her people, here in the remote corner of Southern Maharashtra, the barren soil of this part had similar labouring pains when a comparatively smaller group of men like Mamasaheb Sathe endowed with tremendous foresight and forethought had conceived an idea of starting a technical institution to cater to the ever growing need of technically qualified personnel in this country. The New Engineering College, Sangli was its natural outcome.
To turn this Utopia into reality needed not only courage, vision, foresight and a great amount of hardwork but also devotion, a sense of dedication and an insatiable thirst of contributing one's mite to a great national cause. The pioneer founders Mamasaheb Sathe and his colleagues had all this and some thing more. Their sensitive minds quickly responded to the need of the hour. This could not have been possible without the parental love and care of His Highness, the Late Chintamanrao Patwardhan & Her Highness the Late Smt. Saraswati-devi Patwardhan, rulers of the erstwhile Sangli State. This institution and the College are ever indebted to them for their constant encouragement, goodwill and substantial help in the budding stage of the College.
New Engineering College Principals

Seth Walchand Hirachand Memorial Trust headed by industrialist Seth Lalchand Hirachand came forward and donated a substantial sum of Rs. 5 lakhs in the year 1955. Under an arrangement reached between the Maharashtra Technical Education Society and the Seth Walchand Hirachand Memorial Trust, the college was renamed as Walchand College of Engineering in 1956 in presence of the then Vice President of India, Dr. S. Radhakrishnan. At the same time state and central governments also came forward and an annual recurring grant was started at 60% of admissible expenditure or the deficit whichever is less.

The management of the college was given to the Ad-hoc Committee in 1955 comprising
  1. Shri J. A. Taraporewalla – Mumbai [ Government ]
  2. Shri R. S. Bhandarkar – Central Govt. advisor
  3. Seth Gulabchand Hirachand – Chairman - Walchand trust
  4. Shri M. V. Bhide – Chairman – M. T. E. Society
  5. Shri V. A. Joshi – Vice-Principal