BANGALORE: Of the many lodges and hotels that surround the Kempegowda Bus Terminus, one stands tall — not structurally, but in the principles they follow.
Where else can you find accommodation in the city for Rs 30 per day ? And this nominal amount is charged only to fund a free hostel for students.
The place, situated opposite the bus station, sports a nondescript board that states Sri Gubbi Thotadappa Charitable Trust. It provides clean and safe accommodation for people from all parts of the country and cater to the needs of around 300 people.
Accommodation is available for all, irrespective of caste, creed or language.
Most of them who come here seeking accommodation are those who are in the City to give exams such as Central Government exams or practical exams in universities offering distance education and teachers from other parts of the state for evaluation work.
“We are extremely happy with the facilities here. There is sufficient water supply and surroundings are maintained well,’’ says Rahul Mehta from Haryana who was in Bangalore to write an exam conducted by the Railways.
There are many more happy testimonials available.
Initially , Gubbi Thotadappa started a free hostel for students from Veerashaiva community in 1903.
He also had the foresight to start a choultry. It benefited two different sets of people — those from other parts of the State who come in to the City will now have a clean and safe place to stay at an affordable price; while the money collected from the choultry can be used to fund the free hostel.
The choultry and hostel were inaugurated by Krishnaraja Wodeyar on February 11, 1903.
“Initially, the Trust used to collect four annas (25 paise) per person for staying one day.
It gradually increased to Rs 10 over the years. Now, it is Rs 30 per day,’’ says C H Budihal, executive officer, Rao Bahadur Dharmapravartha Gubbi Thotadappa’s Charities. The accommodation is a boon for several people including Basavaraj Lakshman Doramani of Gokak. Basavaraj accompanied his niece who had to attend an interview here.
“It would have been difficult for me to get a place at an affordable price in and around Majestic area. I am grateful to the management of this Trust for providing accommodation that is affordable and safe,’’ says Basavaraj.
According to Budihal, Rs 30 (per day) is collected from each person by the Trust and is meant for maintenance of the premises and to pay for the electricity and water facilities.
“We are maintaining a free hostel for students studying in professional colleges.
We provide accommodation and food for students free of cost. As of now, there are 395 students residing at this hostel. We also maintain free hostels at 13 different cities in the state,’’ he says.