Vengalil family

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The Vengalil family is an aristocratic Nair family from Malabar that was powerful in India during much of the British Raj, and known as intimates of the Nehru-Gandhi family.


Closely affiliated with the Dewanship of Travancore and related to the royal families of Cochin and Travancore, the Vengalil family were among India's greatest landowners until the rise of the communist government in Kerala, owning such controversial regions as the hydroelectric power center of Kuttiyadi. The family originated through the marriage of Raman Menon, Dewan of Travancore (1815–1817) serving Maharani Gowri Parvati Bayi and his wife, Narayani Amma.

Influential members include politician V. K. Krishna Menon and author Janaki Ram, as well as C. P. Ramaswami Aiyar by marriage. Numerous members of the Vengalil family held titles equivalent to that of Thakur or Raja in north India.


  • Krishna Menon: A Biography by T. J. S. George (1965)
  • V. K. Krishna Menon: a personal memoir by Janaki Ram (1997)