Hi, Peeples. I spent 2 years in East Africa back in the 1970s (Tanzania, to be exact.) There are many Patels there, the name originating from the Gujarat. I don't know the exact meaning of the name, but the Patels are very capable business people.
They arrived in East Africa at the time the British were opening up that part of the continent and building the railway up to Lake Victoria.
Trading posts were started, numerous business ventures were open to the energies which the Patels had to offer.