Who is a Malayalee?

Malayalee (or Malayaali) is the popular epithet to one who speaks Malayaalam, the Dravidian language which is the mother tongue of more than 96% of the population of Kerala State in the west coast of India and also in the Lakshadweep islands. Technically Malayaali is one who acquires the Malayaalam language. This acquisition can be of varying degrees ranging from perfect control over the spoken as well as written modes of the language to some familiarity with a few words. It is the natural consequence of one’s living during childhood in a Malayaalam speaking environment and not the result of any formal training or learning.