Content toBorn on 19 November 1852, at Mulky near Mangalore, Sri Ammembal Subba Rao Pai underwent early schooling at Government High School, Mangalore, and it was the early demise of his mother that is believed to have profoundly influenced him to take to studies seriously. be updated.

After passing his F.A Examination, his father sent him to Madras to take up higher studies. Following his graduation from  the Presidency College, he joined the Madras Law College. Here he came into contact with Justice Holloway, whose remarkable personality proved to be a rewarding experience to him.

In 1876, following the demise of his father, he returned to Mangalore and successfully practiced Law. It is said that he often attempted to persuade amicable out of court settlements for his clients, although this sometimes cost him his fee. In 1891 four teachers, whom he had met in Madras, approached him with a proposal to start a school in Mangalore.

Shortly thereafter in 1894, with a view to encouraging the education of girls he started the Canara Girls High School, indeed an evolutionary step considering the prevalent values and attitude of the people towards women’s education at that time. Concerned about the high interest rates being charged by money lenders to the poor people of South Canara, Pai founded The Canara Hindu Permanent Fund Ltd (now Canara Bank) on 1 July 1906, not longer after the formation of Corporation Bank in the same area.

Among his important contributions to the GSB community was the setting up of the “Poor Boys’s Education Fund” under the aegis of Goud Saraswat Brahmin Parishad of which he was one of the founders. Throughout his life, Sri Ammembal Subba Rao Pai suffered from severe gout, an affliction to which he finally succumbed on 25 July 1909.