Monday, July 13, 2009

Marathi, Konkani must co-exist in Goa

Marathi, Konkani must co-exist in Goa

The three-day all Goa Marathi literary conference
beginning today at Quepem should serve as the turning
point for better coordination between Marathi and
Konkani at all levels including education, literature,
communication and administration if not politics. It
is an acknowledged fact that politicians coupled with
vested interests have been responsible for vitiating
literary co-existence in the state since the
Liberation. A degree of clash for cultural supremacy
was inevitable during the post-Liberation period
because, after all, language is a crucial aspect of
the culture of the given land. That could be justified
at the altar of the religious divide left behind by
the erstwhile Portuguese regime. Unfortunately,
however, the hangover of the colonial rule got
intermixed with the dawn freedom and free expression
and it was the politicians in Goa and Delhi, who
decided everything for Goans including their official
language. In a way, Goa until the grant of fullfledged
statehood soon after the adoption of the official
language Bill by then Assembly on 4 February 1987 was
a colony of New Delhi.

Marathi literary conferences are traditionally being
organised as great cultural events. More than the
liberal flow of prose and poetry what is important on
such occasions is the convergence of Marathi minds and
this interaction normally spins off productive ideas.
Such events are also associated with music, dance and
drama. The Quepem conference being organised by
Gomantak Sahitya Sevak Mandal will have all this plus
something more. It is the tremendous enthusiasm of the
team of organisers headed by Minister for Cooperation
Prakash Velip and the spontaneous interest evinced by
the people in general all over the state to the
`literary journey' conducted by Velip himself.
Besides, more than 2000 Marathi enthusiasts have
enrolled themselves as members of the reception
committee. The conference venue named as `Bharatkar
Nagar' after the great social reformer G P Hegde Desai
is not far from the place where poet B B Borkar penned
some of his immortal poems. Quepem and its surrounding
areas have been sanctified by writers of repute
including N B Nayak, Janappa Kamat, Vishnu Sheldekar,
Mhablu Gauns Desai, Chandrakant Kakodkar, Subhash
Bhende, Vijay Kapdi etc. The 24th Marathi literary
conference is thus a continuation of that great
literary tradition of Quepem taluka.

Apparently, Marathi protagonists would expect Chief
Minister Manohar Parrikar, who inaugurates the
conference, to come out with a forthright statement to
what they believe rectification of a distortion in the
official language act. With Agriculture Minister
Ramrao Desai being the working president of the
conference and Information Minister Sanjay Bandekar
being the vice president and south Goa MP Ramakant
Angle in his capacity as the vice president of the
organising committee, there is a feeling that this
Marathi event has the patronage of the government.
Even if the Chief Minister desists from saying that he
would put Marathi on par with Konkani as the official
language, there is a sense of confidence among the
organisers that henceforth Marathi would not receive
step-motherly treatment in the corridors of power.
This could be the net gain of the conference and,
hence, this could also be the dawn of a new era of
linguistic sensibilities in Goa. We believe it is time
Goans forget the bitterness of the past and revive the
spirit of co- existence. There is no clash between
Konkani and Marathi, so far as literary activity is

That is the reason why we would suggest that it is
time for Marathi and Konkani protagonists including
writers, poets and supporters come on a common
platform to evolve a methodology for collective
efforts to develop both the languages. Neither Marathi
nor the Konkani writers have aversion against each
other. The all India Konkani Bhasha Parishad at its
Panaji meeting had given a call to Konkani writers to
establish bonds with Marathi writers for the purpose
of improving the standard of Konkani literature.
Marathi protagonists too have recognised independence
of Konkani as it also figures in the eighth schedule
of the Constitution. Where is the room for acrimony
then? It is time that language or literary movement
ceases to be a pawn in the hands of politicians. The
Goa Konkani Akademi and TACT Institute of Wilmix
Wilson Mazarello have already shown the way by
inviting experts on Marathi and Konkani stage to
discuss improvements in Tiatro.
(Gomantak Times)

- Forwarded by

Gaspar Almeida
To Goa with Love
Expressions - log in to


Nov 12, 2001

No comments:

Post a Comment