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After going back and forth with various old versions of Linux kernel ... I've
finally settled on kernel 1.0

The reason being - It has support for some basic stuffs such as ext2 file
system and ELF executables

I had to do the following to get it to work - 

1. Make the necessary changes to the inline assembly for the newer gcc
2. Looks like e2fs directory entry had undergone a change - there was no file
   type earlier
3. Make the kernel loadable by GRUB
4. Make the kernel be able to use modules loaded via GRUB as the RAMDISK
5. Increase the initial identity memory mapping from 4MB to 8MBto be able to
   use larger RAMDISKs
6. Modified GRUB to switch to VESA graphics mode because Linux kernel is already
   in protected mode.

Next plan is to get NanoX running on this kernel