Hebbalalu Velpanuru Nanjundaiah was born on 13 October, 1860. His father was Subbaiah and mother was Annapurnamma. The couple had five children – two sons and three daughters and Nanjundaiah was the first of these two sons. Nanjundaiah studied at Wesleyan Mission High School (Hardwicke High School at present) and later at Madras Christian College. He secured a B. A. degree in 1880. After completing his B. A., he worked briefly as a Sub-Registrar at Kollegal and as a clerk at the Accountant General’s Office at Madras. He did his Bachelor’s Degree in Law (B. L.) in 1883. Two years later, in 1885, H. V. Nanjundaiah was appointed as Munsiff at Nanjanagud, Mysore. The same year, he completed his M. A. as well. Following this, he was appointed as Assistant Commissioner at Hassan, Shimoga and eventually at Mysore. In 1892, he returned to Law as a Sub-Judge at Bangalore Court. The next year, H. V. Nanjundaiah completed his Master’s in Law (M. L.) Degree. In recognition of his academic and legal credentials, the Madras University made him a Fellow of the University in 1895. He was appointed as Under Secretary to the Government of Mysore in 1895. From 1897 onwards, H. V. Nanjundaiah would hold many positions such as Deputy Commissioner of Shimoga, Chief Secretary to Mysore State, Chief Judge of Mysore State and Vice Chancellor of the University of Mysore.