PRINCELY STATES OF INDIA

Walluvanad (Velatra, Velnatera, Vellatiri)

Walluvanad means the country of the Valluvars or Pallavas, a group that claims Kshatriya status and that, according to tradition, was given a vast extension of land when Cheraman Perumal left for Mecca. The Walluvanad raja was also given Perumal's shield (presumably to defend himself from the sword received by the zamorin of Calicut from the departing ruler) and the presidency of the Malabarkuttam, the assembly of all Malabar rulers that met every 12 years. The zamorin also claimed the right to preside over the 1743 meeting this assembly, which the raja of Walluvanad did not attend; the upshot was the Malabarkuttam was never held again. Not surprisingly, the Vellatiri rajas were hereditary enemies of the zamorin. By the late 18th century, Vellatiri or Walluwanad proper was the sole remaining territory of the Walluvanad raja (Valluva Konatiri), who once exercised suzerain rights over a large portion of Southern Malabar. His territory had been gradually broken up by the zamorin. Although management of the country was restored to the Vellatiri raja in 1792, it soon became evident that he was powerless to repress the trouble that quickly broke out between Mapillas (favored by the Mysorean occupiers) and nayars (who sought to restore the ancien régime), and already in 1793 management of the district had to be resumed as the chief and his family fled to Travancore.

Vellatiri is not to be confused with the Walluvanad district that belonged to zamorin of Calicut and was probably his last acquisition at the expense of the Walluwanad raja.

33X,129-131; 55:577-581; 104:I,479,652