Sri. R. Shankar was the third Chief Minister of Kerala during the period 1962-1964. He also served as deputy Chief Minister in the Ministry of Pattom Thanu Pillai, during 1960 - 1962.

He was born to Raman and Kunchali Amma on 30th April 1909 in Kuzhikkalidavaka village, Kottarakkara. He completed his formal education in Puthur Primary School and later, continued in an English School in Kottarakkara. He earned degree in Chemistry and worked as a school teacher for a short period of time.

After that, he went for getting his degree in Law from Thiruvananthapuram Law College and practiced as a lawyer in Kollam District Court. Later, he became the General Secretary of KPCC. He was also the General Secretary of the SNDP Yogam for 10 years and served as its President for one year. Besides, he has chaired the editorial of a newspaper called Dinamony. He was married to Smt. Lakshmikutty Amma and had a son and a daughter.