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Keralā

The people of Kerala. The Keralā served as mercenary soldiers to the kings of Sri Lanka. They rebelled against Mahinda V and governed certain parts of the country (Cv.iv.5, 12). They fought in the army of Parakkamabāhu I against Gajabāhu (Cv.lxix.18; lxx.230). Later, when Parakkamabāhu’s forces were employed in Rohaṇa, the Kerala mercenaries in Koṭṭhasāra conspired with others to capture Rājaraṭṭha, but their attempt was foiled (Cv.lxxiv.44 f).

The Keralā formed the largest part of Māgha’s army which devastated Sri Lanka, and Māgha gave over to them, for their use, whatever they coveted in the conquered territory. They overran the country, carrying destruction wherever they went (Cv.lxxx.61, 76; lxxi.4). Later, however, they suffered severe defeat at the hands of Parakkamabāhu II (Cv.lxxxiii.20). Once a Paṇḍu king fled from the Coḷa king and took refuge among the Keralā (Cv.liii.9; Cv. Trs.i.172, n.3).

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