Timothy Tye
Nagore Durgha Sheriff

Nagore Durgha Sheriff, PenangNagore Durgha Sheriff, Penang (25 January, 2013)

Nagore Durgha Sheriff, or simply the Nagore Shrine, is a shrine to a Muslim saint located along Chulia Street, at the junction with King Street, in the Little India of George Town, Penang.

The Nagore Durgha Sheriff was built in the early 1800s, at about the same time as the Kapitan Keling Mosque nearby. This makes it the oldest Indian Muslim shrine in Penang. The Chulias are a South Indian ethnic group from the Coromandel Coast of India. They are Muslim merchants and moneylenders who arrived in George Town as soon as the British trading port was established.

Nagore Durgha Sheriff, George Town (14 March, 2004)

Front view of the Nagore Durgha Sheriff (28 January, 2009)

Side view of the Nagore Shrine, Penang (4 July, 2004)

The Nagore Durgha Shrine honours Syed Shahul Hamid, a 13th century Muslim Saint who has a large following in Nagore. This shrine in Penang is just one of many similar durghas that have been built in the saint's memory across southern Asia, and is similar to the Nagore Durgha Shrine in Singapore. It has stood on the original section of Chulia Street from the time of Francis Light.

The Nagore Durgha Shrine in Penang is well-kept and painted a brilliant white, so it tends to stand out on clear days. There is a small arcade on the side of the shrine with a small collection of shops selling Muslim prayer paraphernalia and songkok headgear. There used to be a well somewhere on the King Street side of the shrine.

Minarets and domes of the Nagore Durgha Sheriff reflects its South Indian architecture (4 July, 2004)

Getting there

You can take the bus to Chulia Street, or simply walk from the Weld Quay Ferry & Bus Terminal. If going there on foot from the bus terminal, take the pedestrian bridge to cross Weld Quay, then turn left and follow Weld Quay until the junction of Chulia Street Ghaut on your right. Take Chulia Street Ghaut, which becomes Chulia Street after the intersection with Beach Street. You will arrive at Nagore Durgha Sheriff on your right, at the junction with King Street.

Entrance to the Nagore Shrine (24 June, 2005)

What to see and do

Though small, the Nagore Shrine is one of just a few remaining examples of early 19th century South Indian Muslim architecture.

Nagore Shrine is on the map of Chulia Street

Nearby Sights

The Nagore Shrine is located within the core zone of the George Town Unesco World Heritage Site. There are numerous sights around it that you can also visit. Their location is reference to the shrine.
  1. Teochew Ancestral Temple: From Nagore Shrine entrance, turn right and head down Lebuh Chulia, The Teochew Ancestral Temple is on the left side of Lebuh Chulia, in front of the junction with Lebuh Queen.
  2. Sri Mahamariamman Temple: From Nagore Shrine entrance, turn right and head down Lebuh Chulia. At the junction of Lebuh Queen, turn right. The Sri Mahamariamman Temple is on the left side of Lebuh Queen.
  3. Masjid Kapitan Keling: From Nagore Shrine entrance, turn right and go down Lebuh Chulia until the junction of Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling. Cross Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling and then turn left, walk along Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling. You will see Masjid Kapitan Keling on your right.
  4. Lim Kongsi: Cross Lebuh Chulia and enter Loring Pitt. Go straight down Lorong Pitt and you will arrive at Lim Kongsi at the far end, at Lebuh Ah Quee. Take note that it is locked most of the time.
  5. Madrasah Hamid Arabi: Cross Lebuh Chulia and enter Loring Pitt. Go straight down Lorong Pitt and you will see Lim Kongsi at the far end, at Lebuh Ah Quee. To the right side of Lim Kongsi is Madrasah Hamid Arabi.

Songkok shop at the Nagore Shrine arcade (27 July, 2008)

The Nagore Shrine of Singapore (8 July, 2006).

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