History & Heritage

The Indian Association of Penang (IAP) was established in 1923 by Mr. P.K. Nambiar, an advocate and solicitor. He was the first president of Indian Association Penang. The association was formed under the ‘Companies Ordinance 1923’ as a Non-Profitable Association Limited by Guarantee. The association aimed to uplift the morale and image of Indians in Malaya at the time of its formation. The constitution of the association allowed for a wide scope of activities in various fields such as business, education, culture, sports, games, religion, drama, dance, music, and entertainment.

IAP has been instrumental in the formation of other associations throughout Malaya, including the Penang Indian Chamber of Commerce in 1934 and various Indian Associations in other states. IAP can also be said to have laid the foundation for Tamil Education in Malaysia. The association started free Tamil classes in the 1930s, which later grew to be a government-aided Tamil school called the Azad Tamil School, which was housed in IAP grounds for the last 70 years.

IAP has had many honorable visits and has also proudly hosted talks and lectures by prominent figures such as Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India, his daughter, Mrs. Indira Gandhi, also the Prime Minister of India, Nobel Laureate for Literature, Dr. Rabindranath Tagore and Mr. U Ba Lwin on a Rotary Goodwill Mission from Rangoon.

The present property of approximately 4.5 acres was bought by IAP in 1938. The idea was to put up a temporary clubhouse at one corner of the plot and collect funds to build a first-class structure of a Multi-purpose Hall in the middle of the ground. The clubhouse still stands on the original location with some renovations along the way.

IAP has been maintained well by various office bearers and the association also observed Mahatma Gandhi’s Death Mourning in 1948.

Patron of Indian Association Penang

Dato Selvakumar Shunmugam

We are honored to have Dato Selvakumar as the esteemed patron of the Indian Association Penang (IAP). His dedication and unwavering support have significantly contributed to the growth and success of our organization.Dato Selvakumar is a visionary leader and a highly respected figure in the business community.


Dato's first entrepreneurial venture was in Purshotham Metals Sdn Bhd, he then set up Shan Poornam Metals Sdn Bhd in 1999. Subsequently he diversified his business to include recovery and refining of Industrial liquid waste - Shan Poomam Global in 2007. He then set up Shan Poornam Sarawak in 2011, Shan Poornam Johor in 2013, Shan Poornam Selangor in 2014 and Shan Poornam Green Tech in 2020. In 2015, Dato' diversified 40% of his shares to Cenviro Sdn Bhd (100% owned by Khazanah Nasional Berhad).


Dato' donates to education, sports and humanitarian causes in Malaysia and in India. In 2011 Dato' launched Krishnamal Educational Fund. Since 2011, the fund has sponsored 50 students at primary schools, secondary schools and universities both local and overseas. In 2005, Dato' has adopted SJK (Tamil) Ladang Juru. Since 2007, Dato' has provided free medical treatment for curable cancer patients and adopted dialysis patients. In 2017 during the flood crisis, Dato' has supported and provided aid to Kampung Juru and Kampung Dock. In 2020 during Covid-19 pandemic when Malaysia was running short of supplies of PPE, Dato' on his own accord imported supplies and distributed them to front liners Nationwide.


2010 - MITI Industry Excellence Awards
2010/11 - Prime Minister's Hibiscus Award (Notable Achievement in Environmental Performance & Special Project Award)
2012 - GreenTech Manufacturer Award (Gold)
2012 - Corporate Social Responsibility Leadership Awards
2013 - Global Leadership Awards (Renewable Energy Sector)
2013 - Middle East Business Leaders Awards (Leadership in Renewable Energy & Technology)
2013 - 2015-Penang Green Office
2014 - Global Leadership Awards (Excellence in Environmental Sustainability)
2015 - International Award for Excellence & Leadership (Madrid, Spais)
2015 - SOBA Best Innovation (Platinum Award) & Best Green Initiative (Guild Award)
2015/16 - SMEs Best Brands Award-Corporate Branding (Green Rourwabic Energy)
2021 - Highest Volume E-waste Collection Award by DOE (Rocowary & Ruffining Facility)


2010 - MITI Industry Excellence Awards
2005 - Pingat Jasa Kebaktian (PJK)
2015 - Darjah Johan Negeri (DIN)
2019 - Darjah Setia Pangkuan Negeri (DSPN)
2021 - Hall of Fame by Methodist Boys School, Penang

Dato’ is also the Chairman of the Building Committee of the Ayira Vaisyar Sri Meenakshi Sundaraeswarar Temple Penang. He has donated RM250, 000.00 towards the Hilltop Murugan temple and further assisted to raise another RM1.25million for the same cause. Dato’ Selvakumar Shanmugam Chetty has graciously come forward to help IAPG in our time of needand has generously agreed to contribute a substantial amount towards our building project

IAPG Management Committee 2022/24

IAP Org Chart

Milestone of Indian Association Penang



This was the year when the late Mr. P.K. Nambyar gave effect to his desire and the desire of the Indian Community in Penang to establish an INDIAN ASSOCIATION.

23rd April 1924

Consent was given to register the Association under the Companies Ordinance, and after the usual formalities, the Association was registered The ASSOCIATION was from its inception housed at 423, Dato Keramat Road, the present premises of the Chinese Convent School. Soon it came to be regarded as one of the foremost INDIAN ASSOCIATIONS in Malaya.

20th April 1928

The demise of the founder, MR. P.K. NAMBYAR. This is regarded as a great lost to the association


Mr.N.K.Menon, son of the late Mr. P.K.Nambyar took over as the 2nd President


Mr.N.Raghavan tok over as the 3rd President. This is the time when the Free Tamail school was started under the management of Mr. V.G.Pragasam and continued by Mr.V.M.Krishnaswamy


Mr.H.G.Sarwar took over as the 4th President


Mr. N. Raghavan, who was also the 3rd President took over again as the 5th President


Mr.K.S.Pillai took over as the 6th President.


Mr. N.Raghavan tool over for the third time as the 7th President
February 1937- The premises occupied by the Association was sold to the Chinese Convent School. The Association had to shift.

8th July 1937

The present property of 5 acres at No.The present property of 5 acres at No.11, Jalan Bagan Jermal was purchased.11, Jalan Bagan Jermal was purchased.

13rd January 1940

A small clubhouse was built at a corner of this prime land


The Indian Assocation has been maintained well by various office bearears and the clubhouse still stands on the original location with some renovations along the way.