The Indian society was at its cultural, social and political nadir when Maharshi Dayanand Saraswati was born in 1824. He grew up in an environment of political subjugation, where he witnessed extreme casteism, superstition, religious dogma and social oppression of women and marginalized sections of society. He openly stood up against all the social evils such as discrimination on grounds of caste, creed, sex, economic status and social bigotry, male chauvinism and religious dominance of higher castes over the backward castes and classes. He fought for the rights of women and opened Kanya Vidyalayas to empower and enlighten them. Unfortunately, the task of social resurgence was too vast to be completed during his lifetime. When Maharshi Dayanand attained samadhi in 1883, the Indian society was partially reformed with the onus of completing this unfinished task fell on his followers. Realizing the ground realities of Indian society and the nature of the task undertaken by Maharshi Dayanand, his followers decided to commemorate his life and works not by building lifeless statues but by opening temples of learning – schools and colleges where all the values advocated by Maharshi Dayanand would be inculcated among the children so that they could carry forward his message and work ceaselessly throughout their life.
In 1885 the first DAV School was established at Lahore. In 1886 the DAV College Trust and Management Society was established and registered. The DAV Society visualized that the DAV Schools shall produce men and women of strong national character and social commitment. The objectives of the DAV attracted several committed individuals and groups to serve the society by striving hard to collect donations and gather humble resources to set up DAV Schools to spread Maharshi Dayanand’s message for enlightening all the Indians. Thus the crusade against ignorance, illiteracy, injustice and inequality was revived and it gained further momentum with the opening of each DAV School.
DAV College Managing Committee, the executive body of the DAV College Trust & Management Society, streamlined the school curriculum and administrative processes and gave the social movement a splendid vision and precise direction. Towards the end of nineteenth century and in the first half of twentieth century, the DAV College Trust & Management Society established a number of schools across India and abroad. Some schools came into the DAV fold as they were subsequently affiliated to DAV College Trust & Management Society.
The DAV institutions soon gained respect and reputation in the society and began to be recognized for their high academic standards and value-based Vedic and Modern education. The faculty comprised towering personalities such as Mahatma Hansraj, Principal Gyan Chand, Lala Sain Das and Pandit Meher Chand, who selflessly dedicated their lives to the reengineering of the Indian society through modern education and Vedic values. A glorious DAV alumni is a testimony to these facts. Thus the movement started by Mahrshi Dayanand was led by missionaries, visionaries, nationalists and other like-minded people. In the course of time, there emerged new needs and challenges as per changing the national scenario. The DAV Movement continued to surge ahead under the dynamic and motivating leaderships of Shri. Mehr Chand, Lala Balraj, Justice Mehar Chand Mahajan, Dr. G. L. Dutta, Lala SurajBhan, Prof. Vedvyas, Shri. DarbariLal, Shri. T.R. Tuli, Shri. G. P. Chopra and Shri. Punam Suri. It was their missionary consciousness that fostered the growth of many more institutions across the country and led DAV to newer heights.
Dayanand Anglo Vedic (DAV) College Trust and Management Society, New Delhi established Damani Bhairuratan Fatehchand Dayanand College of Arts and Science, Solapur on 17th June 1940 in memory of the victory of Satyagraha launched by Arya Samaj against the Nijam of Hyderabad as a part of `Marathwada Mukti Sangram’ and basically to cater to the needs of higher education for the population of this region of Maharashtra and also of the surrounding areas of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. It is one of the oldest and renowned educational institutions in this part of country. Presently, DAV management runs 914 educational institutions in India and abroad. Of 914 institutions, 15 are situated in Mumbai, Pune and Solapur cities of Maharashtra. 11 institutions are situated in Solapur, which include, 7 Colleges (4 Senior + 3 Junior), 3 Schools and a KG model school). Excluding the Model school, all other are government-aided.