Iravikkutti Pillai

Iravikkutti Pillai

Iravikkutti Pillai

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Iravikkutti Pillai (1603–1635) was a great Commander-in-Chief of the Venad Kingdom of South Kerala in India.


Iravikkutti Pillai belonged to the Valiya Veedu Nair family of Keralapuram in Kalkulam now in the Kanyakumari District of Tamil Nadu. His mother was Easvari Pillai. Kuzhikkottu Paduvilakathu Kochu Narayana Pillai was his Guru in warfare. He became a minister under the King Unni Kerala Varma of Venad. The capital of Venad was Padmanbhapuram. During his time, Madurai Thirumala Naickan attacked Venad. Irvikkutti Pillai was asked to lead the venad army and the attack which was spearheaded by Velayyan was repulsed. As a reward Iravikkutti Pillai was appointed the Chief Minister and the Commander-in-Chief of Venad. But Thirumala Naickan sent another army under the leadership of Ramappayyan to attack Venad. The battle at Kaniyamkulam near Nagercoil was decisive. Some army commanders betrayed the Venad army out of jealousy towards Iravikkutti Pillai Padathalavar and the Madurai army defeated the Venad army. Iravikkutti Pillai was killed in the battle. This incident became the theme for the folk song for the Villadichan Paattu, ‘‘‘Kaniyakulathu Poru’’’ in the local Tamil dialect.


  • ‘‘Mahacharitha Samgraham’’ by Pallippattu Kunjukrishnan.

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