Kaul, Koul, Caul or Kol (Kashmiri: कौल (Devanagari), کول (Nastaleeq)) is a surname used by the Kashmiri Pandit community. The term also refers to the Kaul clan from which several other krams (surnames) of Kashmir have originated.
The word Kaul, meaning well born, is derived from Kula, the Sanskrit term for family or clan. Its use as a surname or appellation is a derivative of the ancient name Kaula which means well born and is related to Saivite beliefs
The Aryan Saraswat Brahmins of Kas'mira were believers in Saivism and Shakta, the peak of Saivism in Kashmir around the 9th century ~ 12th century gave rise to use of the name. They are considered one of the apex of the Saraswat Brahmin Class. http://www.nytimes.com/1986/09/02/us/washington-talk-briefing-the-kauls-are-everywhere.html http://books.google.co.in/books?id=It1LePnN2LsC&pg=PA134&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q&f=false