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Erwadi Dargah Shariff
Erwadi Dargah
Erwadi Dargah
Erwadi is located in Tamil Nadu
Location in Tamil Nadu, India
Coordinates: 9°15′00″N 78°51′04″E / 9.25°N 78.851°E / 9.25; 78.851Coordinates: 9°15′00″N 78°51′04″E / 9.25°N 78.851°E / 9.25; 78.851
Country  India
State Tamil Nadu
District Ramanathapuram district
 • Official Tamil
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)

Ervadi or Erwadi is a village in Ramanathapuram district, Tamil Nadu in southern India belonging to Kadaladi Taluk and Keelakarai Town panchayat. The village is the location of the grave and shrine of Qutbus Sultan Syed Ibrahim Shaheed Badusha, the then ruler of Madinah Al Munawwara. Erwadi also belongs to Kadaladi Assembly constituency which is a part of Ramanathapuram (Lok Sabha constituency). But after the delimitations in 2009, Erwadi has been joined to Ramanathapuram assembly constituency. Although a small town, Erwadi is the second largest contributor for the revenue of Ramanthapuram District.


Erwadi is a town located in the Kadaladi taluk of Ramanathapuram District in southern Tamil Nadu. It is located on the coast between Keelakarai and Valinokkam. The town is famous for the shrine of Sultan Syed Ibrahim Shaheed badusha.

Ervadi gaining importance in Tamil Nadu[edit]

The coin published by Syed Ibrahim Shaheed in Ervadi during His rule

Al Qutbul Hamid wal Gausul Majid Badhusha Sulthan Syed Ibrahim Shaheedu is an 18th generation descendant of the Islamic prophet Muhammad. He was the king of Madinah when he began his journey to India in the early 12th century to spread Islam according to Muhammad's wish. At the time he had millions of followers from all over the Islamic world.[2] Sultan Syed Ibrahim Shahid first came to the Sindh province in Pakistan and spread Islam there through various means and returned to Madinah. Again in obligation to Muhammad's command, Shaheed Badusha started from Madinah with his entire family, leaving the throne behind. He encountered many difficulties while travelling by sea and through the forests on his way to India, without proper food and shelter or potable water to drink, but finally entered Kannanur in Kerala. His ultimate aim was to spread Islam as per the order of his hereditary grandfather Muhammad. He travelled via, Kayalpattinam, Vaippar, Madurai and finally entered Bouthiramanickapattinam, now called Ervadi. Considering the religious importance of the place, the Tamil national daily Dinamalar has published 360o travel view of the dargah.

The war[edit]

Coins used by the Muslim rulers and Pandiya rulers in Ervadi and Ramanathapuram provinces

Sultan Syed Ibrahim Shaheed, offered the Islamic teachings to the Pandiya ruler, Thiru Pandiyan, in Madurai but he refused to accept them and waged war against Shaheed. Finally the troops of Shaheed won and Sultan Iskandar (Sikandar) Badusha was throned in Madurai. Then the troops of Shaheed marched towards Bouthramanickapattinam. Shahidh Badusha offered Islam to King Vikkirama Pandiyan who vehemently refused and asked Shaheed to leave the kingdom. Shaheed refused to leave without converting them to Islam. Vikrama Pandiyan declared war. A very violent war which consisted of about 10 battles, each of around 3–4 days, was waged. All of the family members of Shaheed Badhusah were killed, including his only son Syed Abutahir, his brother Syed Ismail, his brother-in-law Zainul Aabideen and many of the martyrs and ministers of Shaheedh Badhusha including Amir Abbas of Rome, Abdul Qadir Mujahid, Muhaiyaddeen, Aboobakkar Abdul Hakkim, Abdullah, Shamsuddin of Makkah, Qamaruddin, Nooruddeen, Muhammadh Yusuf, Jafar Sadiq, Rome Syed Ahmad, Zulfaqar Ali @ Chanthana Peer of Turkey, Abdul Qadir Gilani, Abdul Qadir Samadaani, Pathan Sahib, Hamza basheer, Uvaisul Hasan Ridwanullahi Ta'ala alaihim ajmaeen and several thousand others.[3] Finally, king Vickrama Pandiyan was killed and Shaheed won the war and claimed the throne of Bouthiramanickapatttinam. He ruled the province for twelve years and spread Islam all over south Tamil Nadu. Coins struck during the rule of Sulthan Syed Ibrahim Shaheed have been found by archeologists.[4] He wished to be a martyr and told Muhammad about his wish before leaving Medinah, receiving a promise from the Prophet that his prayer would be answered.

The peace[edit]

Reverse view of the coins

Twelve years later, King Tiru Pandiyan came from Madurai with a larger army and assassinated Shaheed Badusha in order to recapture the throne. Then again Badusha Syed Is'haq (Shaheed Badhusha's brother Syed Ismail Badusha's son) killed King Thiru Pandiyan and claimed the throne. The rivalry between the Arabs and Pandiyas came to an end when both signed a pact, according to which Arabs (descendants of Shaheed Badusha) would rule the Bouthiramanikka Pattinam (Ervadi) Province and the Pandiyans would rule the Ramanathapuram province. This continued to be implemented until the 17th century until the British East India Company started occupying India. Syed Is'haq, Syed Ibrahim, Syed Baqir, Syed Qasim, Syed Tahir Ridwanullahi Ta'ala Alaihim Ajmaeen and other descendants of Sulthan Syed Ibrahim Shaheed have ruled the Bouthiramanikkapattinam province and Regunatha Sethupathy, Kilavan (Kizhavan) Sethupathy, Vijaya Regunatha Sethupathy, Muthu Regunatha Sethupathi, Muthuramalinga Sethupathy, Bhaskara Sedupathy, Kumaran Sethupathi and other descendants of Sethupathi have ruled the Ramanathapuram province.

Shuhadaas and Waliyatullahs in Erwadi[edit]

Erwadi Masjid with huge minaret

The graves of Emperor Sulthan Syed Ibrahim Shaheed Badusha along with his relatives are found in the main dargah campus. The graves of other important Shuhadaas and in laws of Badusha Sulthan Syed Ibrahim Shaheed are also found on the premises. A very big mosque which can accommodate 10,0000 pilgrims for every prayer-service is also found on the Main dargha campus. The single mammoth minaret which is around 250 feet (76 m) adds to the impressive appearance of Erwadi. It can be viewed from any of the shores of Ramanathapuram District and this acts as a virtual lighthouse to the fishermen in Ervadi and the adjacent villages.

Shuhadaas in the main dargah[edit]

The main shrine (dargah) in Erwadi is mixed with the soil of Madinah. Qutb Sulthan Syed Ibrahim Shaheed and most of his family members, close relatives and other shuhadaas' graves are found in the main dargah. The big hall of the Shrine of Sultan Syed Ibrahim Shahid was constructed by Eiatibar Khan, during the time of the Nawab of Arcot. The main Dargah has three entrances. It is fully open except for the dargahs. Thousands of pilgrims come here to take the dust of this mixture of Madinah's soil which is said to cure all kinds of fatal diseases with the blessings of Shaheed Badusha.

Santhanakoodu urus festival[edit]

Beginning of Moulidu shariff at Erwadi dargah main Maqbra

The Grand urus festival of Ervadi dargah is held every year in the Islamic Month of Dhu al-Qi'dah commemorating the shahadat anniversary of Qutb Sulthan Syed Ibrahim Shahid badhusha. The Grand festival starts on 1st of Zul Qaida and ends on 30th of Zul Qaidah of every Hijri year.

Beginning of Moulid Shariff – Dhul Qadah 1[edit]

A view of Erwadi flag's lower trunk.

This event marks the beginning of the Urus festival in Erwadi. On the first night of the Islamic month of Dhu al-Qi'dah the Moulid Shariff majlis starts after a grand Du'aa. Hundreds of Levvais (Huqdars), descendants of Madurai Maqbara and devotees gather at the Hall of Main Shrine of Erwadi Durgah after Maghrib (prayer). The majlis starts with Dua followed by Subhana Moulidh, Shaheed Badusha Manaaqib Moulidh, Zikr and ends with Dua. Half an hour break is given for Isha'a Prayer in between the Moulid Shariff which lasts till 11.00 pm. On Thursdays, The Moulidh Shariff begins after Isha'a prayers. This Moulidh Shariff is held continuously for 23 days.

Installation of Lower trunk (Adi Maram) – Dhul Qada 9[edit]

Lakhs of pilgrims witnessing the flag hoisting ceremony at Erwadi dargah, 2013 September

This event marks the beginning of Flag hoisting ceremony of Ervadi dargah. This event is held every year on the 9th Evening of the Islamic month of Dhul Qaidah. A Quran recital ceremony is held commemorating the martyrdom of Qutb Syed Abutahir madani shaheed. After the Fajr prayers, Thousands of people gather in the Durgah campus and Qur'an is recited for 4 or 5 times depending upon the gathered crowd followed by Moulid Shariff and Du'a with the Waseelah of Qutbul Aqtab Syedus Saadath Qutb Syed Abootahir Madhani Shaheed. The same day evening the lower trunk of the flag is installed after Asar parayers and duaa. Ropes are tied to the huge lower trunk weighing 4 tonnes and the trunk is fixed by tying the ropes at the six corners. Holding of the rope to lift the lower trunk of the flag makes many wishes come true by the waseela of Badusha nayagam which is called as عماد المرآد Imadul murad. The Erwadi dargah's victory flag is being hoisted at an height of 250 feet (76 m) consisting of a lower trunk, an upper trunk and the boat-shaped metal holding. A white woodden holder is placed at the upper edge of the lower trunk and is tied with 6 ropes to hold upon and its base is placed in the midst of the flag hoisting throne (Kodi medai). A few lakhs of people who gather to witness the ceremony pull the ropes and the Trunk rises slowly. Finally when it reaches the vertical position ropes are tied to make the trunk strong hold. This holding the rope is called as Imaadhul Muraad, and people who holds this rope with a wish seeking the help of Shaheedh Badushaha Nayagam, will see it answered in a very short period within the year.

Flag hoisting (Kodiyetru Vizha) – Dhul Qaidah 10[edit]

Full view of Erwadi flag.

This an important ceremony in the Santhanakoodu festival of Ervadi durgah. Around 600,000 people from all parts of Tamil Nadu and Kerala and also various states like Karnataka, Andhrapradesh, Maharashtra, Delhi and all over India take part. On the 10th evening of Zul Qaidah, The flag procession starts from the Erwadi village and reaches Durgah Shariff before maghrib. The flag is brought in an elephant which traditionally comes from the palace of the Raja of Ramnad. The procession goes round the durga thrice. Qasidahs are recited and after a grand Dhuaa, the Flag is hoisted in the upper trunk with a full voice slogan of Yaa Shaheed!!! Muraad Haasil!!!. The regular moulidh shariff starts at 9.00 pm on this day.

Santhanakoodu Procession – Dhul Qada 22[edit]

A view of the Sandal carrier of Erwadi dargah

This procession is conducted just to mark the beginning of the Main santhanakoodu festival. Procession starts from Ervadi Kudi iruppu, the residential area of Mujavirs (Huqdars called as Levvais) and reaches the Dargah shariff campus before maghrib prayers. The shadhili tariqa zikr halqa majlis (Hazra) is held in the Mosque at the durgah campus. A few millions of people start gathering at Erwadi and get scattered at kattupalli and other areas of Ervadi durga. District administration announces local Holiday on this day and the State government along with TNSTC runs thousands of special buses to Erwadi from various locations of Tamil Nadu. Hundreds of stalls are being put by the Government and by the private vendors. Many food stalls and child entertainment games are being run in this season.

Sandal Smearing on the Grave – Dhul Qadah 23[edit]

This is the peak celebration and the sole purpose of the one-month-long Santhanakoodu festival in Ervadi Durgah. This day marks the martyrdom of Qutbul hamid Gausul Majid Badusha Sulthan Syed Ibrahim Shaheed. The 23rd day moulid shariff (Last Moulid for the year) starts exactly at 12.00 am on the 23rd night of Dhu al-Qi'dah and ends at 3:30 am with a grand Dhuaa begging Shaheed badusha's mercy. Sandal paste are taken in 3 pots from Ervadi and brought in the very grand procession. It reaches Durgah around 5:00 am and the sandal pot is taken to the maqbara, the grave (Mazaar) of Shaheed Badusha. The procession goes round the Dargah thrice. A grand Dhuaa is recited inside the Maqaam of shaheed badusha. The sandal is smeared in the rauza mubarak of Shaheed and different carpets with Valuable Silk, Diamond and other floral carpets are presented. The sandal paste is anointed on the Rauza of Qutb Syed Abootahir Shaheed and the rouza of Seyyida Fathima Al Barqa(Shahid badusha'a mother). Only selected Levvais (Mujavirs – Huqdars) and a few Guests including the descendants of Madurai Maqbara are permitted inside the Maqam during the ceremony. More than 1000 policemen and policewomen are deployed for security. The ceremony ends with the fajr prayer and the sandal is distributed to all who gather in the Dargah campus.

Dismounting of the Flag (Kodi Irakkam) – Dhul Qadah 30[edit]

This is the final event which marks the end of a month long Santhanakoodu festival in Erwadidurgah. Every year on the 30th Morning of Islamic month of Dhu al-Qi'dah thousands of people gather at the hall of main Dargah after fajr prayer for the recitation of Quran. Qur'an is completely recited more than 7 times and Tabarruk is distributed after the dhuaa with the waseela of Badhusha Nayagam (Holy King). The same day evening, after Asar Qasidas and Byts are recited followed by the grand final Dhuaa and the flag is dismounted with the Sky blowing slogan of YAA SHAHEED!!! MURAD HAASIL!!!. The flag is presented unto the Rouza of Sulthan Syed Ibrahim Shaheed and a Dhuaa is recited. The lower trunk and other components of the flag are displaced before maghrib. Around 1.5 million people from all over India and other countries like Sri Lanka, U.K., Saudi Arabia, U.A.E. and Kuwait take part. The crowd which gathers here for this ceremony is the highest than any other festival in Ramanathapuram District. After maghrib, the traditional Thabarruk of 'NEI SORU' (Ghee Rice) is distributed to all the 1.5 million pilgrims who witnessed the Santhanakoodu Urus festivals of Erwadi Dargah. The arrangements for the entire festival is made and sponsored by the Dargah Huqdhar Management Committee (D.H.M.C.). Thus the one month long Urus Festival of Ervadi Durgah Shariff comes to an end.

Ervadi today[edit]

People with illness visit this durgah in large number seeking a cure. Millions of people visit this Durgah during the Urus Santhanakoodu Anniversary, held during the entire Islamic month of Dhu al-Qi'dah[5]


Ervadi durgah is well connected by all means of transport through India. It has nonstop transport facility from all over Tamil Nadu.


Erwadi has wide range of connectivity through road from all parts of Tamil Nadu. The major East Coast Road which connects entire Tamil Nadu through Bay of Bengal from Chennai to Kanyakumari itself touches Ervadi. Also NH 49 from Madurai to Rameswaram touches Ramanathapuram and from there East Coast Road can be taken via Kilakarai to reach Ervadi and the distance in this route is 27 km. There are frequent buses for every 30 minutes being operated by TNSTC from Ramanathapuram to Erwadi. Also TNSTC operates direct buses to Erwadi from various parts of Tamil Nadu like Madurai, Kumuli, Pattukottai, Thondi, Nagore and Chennai. Also Earvadi acts a connecting center to nearby village towns like Mudukulathur, Sayalgudi, Valinokkam, Sikkal, Idambaadal, Kombuthi, Kamudi, Kadaladi etc., with the district headquarters of Ramnad. Thus, buses and other road vehicles plying to these towns pass through Ervaadi. Also, buses from Ramnaad and Rameshwaram towards Tuticorin, Thiruchendur, Kanniyakumari halt at Erwadi generating some amount of revenue. This helps lot people travelling between these towns to know about Earwadi the holiest town in Tamil Nadu for Muslims. There is a SETC service from Chennai daily Route No: 169, Departs from Chennai at 7:15 pm and arrives at Erwadi at 7:45 am the next day, the same departs to Chennai at 2:15 pm via Kilakarai, Ramnad, R. S. Mangalam, Karaikudi, Pudukkottai, Tiruchirappalli, Villupuram. Erwadi is 28 km from Ramnaad and 104 km from Tuticorin.


Ramanathapuram railway station (Station code: RMD) is the nearest station to erwadi and is well connected through road. Train No. 16101 and Train No.16713 which comes from Chennai Egmore and Train Nos 16102 and 16714 which comes from Rameswaram can be availed here. There are three passenger trains to Tiruchirapalli via Paramakkudi, Manamadurai, Sivagangai, Karaikudi, Devakottai and Pudukkottai. Two passenger trains shuttle between Madurai and Rameswaram via Ramanathapuram, Paramakkudi, Manamadurai and Thirupuvanam.
Also trains to Quilon, Bhubaneswar and Nizamuddin Railway Station from Rameswaram which are to run shortly will touch Ramanathapuram and this can be availed by Ervadi passengers from North India once it starts its service.


Erwadi is well connected with the border ports of Bay of Bengal. Though this is neither a port nor a harbour, this is the junction point of all fishing steamers. Fishermen from adjacent villages like Kilakarai, Chinna Ervadi,Seranthai, Sadamuniyan valasi, Adam cheri, Adanjeri, kavakulam etc., anchor their fishing ships and steamers here. So, People who wish to travel to Ervadi by ship can start their journey from any of these neighbouring villages. There are regular glass boat rides with transparent base to see the corals from the Erwadi beach to witness the beautiful aquatic life in the Gulf of Mannar. Sea turtles are frequent visitors to the gulf as are sacred sharks, dugongs, and dolphins. Each ride costs Rs 50 for a person.

Educational institutions[edit]

  • S.A.B.M.H Government Higher Secondary School
  • Elite Matriculation school
  • Kadaladi Union Middle School Chinna Ervadi

Guest Houses and Restaurants at Ervadi Dargah, Ramanathapuram(District) Guest Houses and Restaurants with middle class facilities whcih is mostly run by the Group of Huqdars and their relatives.You can find the below:

  • Ameer Aalim line
  • Taj Guest Inns
  • Chairman Line
  • Thangamma line
  • Gowthiya Raziya Line
  • Munsif Hussain Mumtaj Mahal
  • Fathima Gani Mahal
  • Rifaya Mahal
  • Misbah Line
  • Amjadha Mahal
  • Arshadha Mahal
  • Darbar Guest House
  • Sulaiha Line
  • Haja Line
  • Jahanghir Sulthan Line
  • Khaleefa Line
  • Azees Line
  • Jamarath Mahal & Line
  • Shahid Waliullah Guest House
  • Mukhthar Mahal
  • Royal Guest House
  • Deluxe Guest house
  • Paris guest house


  • Barakkath Restaurant, Dargah Western Gate.
  • Dasooqui Restaurant,(Earlier Khuthbiya)


  • Rahmath Restaurant
  • Star Malabar Restaurant
  • Ayisha Restaurant
  • Muhammadh Sal..Restaurant
  • Raj Bhavan Restaurant (Pure Vegetarian)
  • Rowther Mess
  • Benasir Restaurant
  • Miskeen Restaurant
  • Idris Restaurant (Ervadi,Main Road)
  • Barakkath Restaurant, (Kattupalli)
  • Sikandar Badushah Restaurant,(Kattupalli)

Picture gallery[edit]

Full view of Erwadi Main Durgah Sharif

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Edition 3, page 24 of Erwadi Shaheed Nayagam varalaaru, authored by Moulvi.Haji.Marhoom.S.Amjad Ibrahim Levvai Aalim Saahib and published by Ameer Aalim Publications, Erwadi Durgah, Ramanathapuram District, India
  3. ^ Vol.1 Edition 6, Mathan 4 Page 42 of Failul Majid Fi manaaqibi Shaheed written by Syed Ibrahim Levvai Aalim and published by Ameer Batcha Aalim Publications, Erwadi Dargah, Ramanathapuram District.
  4. ^ Sethu Sulthaniyar varalaru written by Dr.S.M.A.Kather, published by Nargees publications, Trichy.
  5. ^

External links[edit]

  • Media related to Erwadi at Wikimedia Commons