K.Ramakrishna Pillai was born in Athiyanoor (Arangamugal in Neyyattinkara Taluk of Travancore) on 25 May 1878 . He was the youngest son of Chakkiamma and Narasimhan Potti, a temple-priest.
The patriarch of the family (Thekkekod veedu) had once saved the life of Prince Marthanda Varma from his enemies. When Marthanda Varma became king or Maharaja of Travancore, he gifted the family 50-acre (200,000 m2) of land, a 12-room mansion and certain privileges in the Krishna temple in Neyyattinkara. Ramakrishna Pillai was born over a century later.
Following the matrilineal Nair tradition, Ramakrishna Pillai spent much of his boyhood with his maternal uncle, Advocate Keshava Pillai. He had his early education at Neyyattinkara English Medium School and Rajagiyamahapadashala, the Royal school, Thiruvananthapuram. He was a shy and silent student. Kattupana Naganathaiyer, K. Velu Pilla and R. Keshavapilla were his early teachers. Ramakrishna Pillai utilized his less restricted life in Thiruvananthapuram to acquaint himself with new books, newspapers, new places and new friends.
Abdul Khader Moulavi, popularly known as Vakkom Moulavi, was the owner of the journal called Swadeshabhimani and C P Govinda Pillai, the editor. RamaKrishna Pillai took over as the editor of the journal in January 1906. Ramakrishna Pillai and his family thus shifted to Vakkom in Chirayinkil Taluk, where the office of the newspaper and the printing press were located. In July 1907, the office of Swadeshabhimani was moved to Thiruvananthapuram and the family moved to Thiruvananthapuram. Though Vakkom Moulavi continued to own the paper, he had given Ramakrishna Pillai total freedom to run the newspaper. They never had any legal or financial contracts between them. Yet, Moulavi provided all the financial aid to set up the press in Thiruvananthapuram. Ramakrisha Pillai also started a woman’s magazine called Sharadha, a student’s magazine called Vidhyarthi and another magazine named Keralan.
P. Rajagopalachari, the then Diwan of Travancore, was the centre of attacks of the newspaper. The paper accused the Dewan of immorality and corruption. Swadeshabhimani’s pen moved against corruption in the state and injustice in the society. He irritated the Maharajah Moolam Thirunal himself by criticizing the large expenses incurred by the Royal consort, the Panapillai Amma, by constructing private palaces and publicly celebrating the wedding of the daughter of the Maharajah.
On 26 September 1910, Swadeshabhimani newspaper and the printing press were sealed and confiscated by the British Police. Ramakrishna Pillai was arrested and banished from Travancore to Thirunelveli in Madras Province of British India. The Superintendent of Police, F S S George (a British Officer), Inspector R Achuthen Pillai, Inspector B Govinda Pillai and Inspector Pichu Aiyangar, carried out the arrest, without an arrest warrant. The police escorted him till Thirunelveli. The Kingdom of Travancore itself was a princely state under the Madras Presidency, then. Ramakrishna Pillai’s family joined him later once he moved to a rented house in Madras. Editorships of newspapers like Kochi and Malabar came to be offered to him during the time, but he chose to stay in Madras.
Ramakrishna Pillai wrote over 20 books in his lifetime and many of them are very notable.
- Vruththaanthapathrapravarthanam (Malayalam) (1912)
- Ende Naadukadathal(My Banishment) (ISBN 81-264-1222-4)
- Karl Marx (Malayalam ) : His biography of Karl Marx was the first in any Indian language.
- Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, (Malayalam) – Biography
- Benjamin Franklin (Malayalam) – Biography
- Socrates (Malayalam) – Biography
- Pathradharmam (Essays)
- Mannante Kannathu
- Christopher Columbus ( Translation in Malayalam )
- Narakathil ninnu ( From the hell)
- Kerala Bhasholpathy ( The Origin of language in Kerala)
- Delhi Durbar
- The Deportation case of Travancore
IMPORTANT QUESTIONS FOR PSC EXAMS
- Pen name of RamaKrishna Pillai?
Answer : Keralan
2. Which year Ramakrishna Pillai become the editor of Kerala Panjika?
Answer : 1901
3. Which year Ramakrishna Pillai become the editor of Malayali News Paper?
Answer : 1903
4. . Malayali News Paper was Published from?
Answer : Kollam
5. The owner of Swadeshabhimani News Paper?
Answer : Vakkom Abdul Khadar Moulavi
6. Swadeshabhimani News Paper was published on?
Answer : 19 January 1905
7. The first editor of Swadeshabhimani?
Answer : C.P. Govinda Pillai
8. Which year Ramakrishna Pillai become the editor of Swadeshabhimani News Paper?
Answer : 1906
9. Name of the magazines published by Ramakrishna Pillai
10. The first book on Journalism in Malayalam language?
Answer : Vrithantha Pathra Pravarthanam
11. The Bible of Kerala Journalism?
Answer : Vrithantha Pathra Pravarthanam
12. Ramakrishna Pillai was deported to Thirunelveli on?
Answer : 26 December 1910
13. The King at the time of deport of Ramakrishna Pillai?
Answer : Sreemoolam Tirunal
14. The Diwan at the time of deport of Ramakrishna Pillai?
Answer : P. Rajagopalachari
15. The Autobiography of Ramakrishna Pillai?
Answer : Ente Nadukadathal
16. Who wrote the biography of Karlmarx in Malayalam?
Answer : Ramakrishna Pillai (1912)
17. Major Works of Ramakrishna Pillai
b. Kerala Bhasholpathi
c. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi
d. Benjamin Franklin
f. Narakathill Ninnu
g. Vrithantha Pathra Pravarthanam
h. Delhi Durbar
18. Died on
Answer : 28 March 1916
19. Tomb of Ramakrishna Pillai is situated at?
Answer : Payyambalam (Kannur)
20. The biography of Kalyani Amma?
Answer : Vazhavatta Smaranakal
21. Statue of Swadeshabhimani Ramakrishna Pillai is situated at?
Answer : Palayam (Thiruvananthapuram)