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V.K. Krishna Menon continues to command our attention not just because he was Jawaharlal Nehru's confidant and soulmate but also for many of his own political and literary accomplishments. A relentless crusader for Indian independence in the UK in the 1930s and 1940s, he was a global star at the United Nations in the 1950s before he was forced to resign as defense minister in the wake of the India-China war of 1962. Meticulously researched and based entirely on new archival material, Jairam Ramesh’s biography, A Chequered Brilliance: The Many Lives of V.K. Krishna Menon, reveals Menon in all his capabilities and contradictions.

Join us for a discussion with Jairam Ramesh on the tumultuous times in which Krishna Menon lived and which he did so much to shape. This discussion will be moderated by Srinath Raghavan.


4:00 to 4:30 p.m.

Welcome Tea and Coffee

4:30 to 4:40 p.m.

Introductory Remarks

4:40 to 5:00 p.m.

Talk by Jairam Ramesh

5:00 to 6:00 p.m.

Discussion and Q&A


Jairam Ramesh

Jairam Ramesh is a member of parliament in the Rajya Sabha, representing Karnataka. As a member of the Indian National Congress, Ramesh held several ministerial portfolios during the United Progressive Alliance’s (UPA) decade-long government—leading the ministries for Rural Development (2011-2014), Drinking Water and Sanitation (2011-2013), Environment and Forests (2009-2011, Union Minister of State – Independent Charge), Commerce and Power (2008-09, Union Minister of State), and Commerce (2006-2009, Union Minister of State). Currently, he serves as chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Science and Technology, Environment, Forests, and Climate Change.


Srinath Raghavan

Srinath Raghavan is a senior fellow at Carnegie India. He is also a professor of International Relations and History at Ashoka University. His primary research focus is on the contemporary and historical aspects of India’s foreign and security policies.