See biography by T. J. S. George (1964); study by M. Brecher (1968).
While in college, he started taking an active interest in the communist movement. While studying in the Law College of Madras, he became involved in marxism, communism, Theosophy and was actively associated with Annie Besant and the Home Rule Movement. He was a leading member of the 'Brothers of Service', founded by Annie Besant who spotted his gifts and helped him travel to England in 1924.
In England, he worked hard for Indian independence as a journalist and secretary (1929 - 1947) of the India League, and became associated with fellow Indian nationalist leader Jawaharlal Nehru. In 1934 he was admitted to the English bar, and after joining the Labour Party he was elected borough councillor of St. Pancras, London. St. Pancras later conferred on him the Freedom of the Borough, the only other person so honoured being Bernard Shaw. In 1932 he inspired a fact-finding delegation headed by Labour MP Ellen Wilkinson to visit India. Menon served as its Secretary and edited its report entitled 'Conditions In India'. During the thirties he founded with Allen Lane the Penguin and Pelican paper back books. He worked as an editor for Bodley Head, Penguin and Pelican Books, and the Twentieth Century Library.
Krishna Menon became a member of the Rajya Sabha in 1953. On February 3, 1956, he joined the Union Cabinet as Minister without Portfolio. In 1957 he was elected to the Lok Sabha from Bombay, and in April of that year he was named minister of defence under Prime Minister Nehru. However, after India's staggering defeat in the Sino-Indian War of 1962, he resigned from office for the country's apparent lack of military preparedness. In 1967 he lost his parliamentary seat but was re-elected in 1969. He died on October 6, 1974 in New Delhi. During his tenure as the High commissioner to Britain, he was accused of being involved in a corruption scam involving the purchase of used military jeeps from Britain to supply to the Indian army during the war with Pakistan in 1948.