‘Mangalore: Institute of Konkani, St Aloysius College (Autonomous) organised a national-level symposium on the theme “Konkani Bhaas – Novo Sonvsar Novo Distavo” (Konkani language – New World New Perspectives) here on October 15.
Principal Dr (Fr) Praveen Martis SJ, in his introductory remarks, said, “There should be more resources available in any language if it is to be utilised more frequently. Following that, learning and using that language will be simpler. As a professor of Chemistry, if I have to translate any chemistry article into Konkani there aren’t many appropriate Konkani words. Konkani language has to be improved in this area. We must take the initiative in that direction. Further, Konkani lacks qualified linguists. At least one student needs to study linguistics each year to address this shortfall. So, attention must be paid to a number of factors in order to safeguard and develop our mother tongue Konkani.”
Dr Purnanand Chari, Associate Professor of Konkani, Mallikarjuna College, Goa was the chief guest. In his address, he said that there are other barriers preventing the development of the Konkani language in addition to the difficulties already posed. “Yes, it is a very joyful thing that the government of Karnataka has also partnered with particular organisations to promote Konkani in the state. The guidelines for the growth of Konkani from a new angle could be formed if today’s discussion is successful in generating normative responses to issues related to the growth of Konkani,” he said.
Fr Melwin Joseph Pinto SJ, Rector, St Aloysius College institutions, who presided over the programme, said that the Konkani script debate was an outdated and worn-out coin. “You, who must transmit Konkani to the current and upcoming generations, must transcend caste, geography, religion, and politics and adopt a fresh outlook in order to meet the language’s development demands. Everything else will be alright because you are a pioneer in this area,” Fr Pinto added.
There were three papers presented by three experts from the Konkani field. Dr (Fr) Melwyn Pinto SJ spoke about the Konkani literature available in Kannada script. Dr Kasturi Mohan Pai highlighted the scope of Konkani in the educational field. Fr Jason Pinto SDB dwelt on the script issue and the way forward. Group discussions were held in the afternoon. The secretaries of eight groups presented the reports of the group discussion.
Flora Castelino welcomed the guests. Miss Teen World Super Model Wencita Dias compered the programme. Joachim Pinto proposed the vote of thanks.
`Astitva Mangalore’ presented a Konkani programme called `Poinnari’; Goan students presented Mando and Deknni, sang songs, and recited poetry at the end of the symposium.
Thirty-eight students and three lecturers from Shenoi Goembab School of Languages and Literature, Goa University, seven students and two lecturers from Shree Mallikarjun and Shri Chetan Manju Desai College, Canacona, Goa, and 41 students and two lecturers from St Aloysius College (Autonomous) Mangalore coupled with a few Konkani writers participated in the symposium.