Konkani-New Dimensions To The Script Embroglio
Posted On: 05/03/2010 19:29 GMT
 
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By Edwin J.F. D'souza


In the last general Council Meeting of Sahitya Akademi, the Academy of Letters of India, held on February 16, 2010 in New Delhi, Edwin JF Dsouza, a member of General Council of the Sahitya Akademi and a Member of the Advisory Board for Konkani raised the controversial issue of Konkani Script.  The Konkani literature is written in Devanagari, Roman, Kannada, Malayalam and Arabic, whereas Sahitya Academi recognized only the books written in official Devanagari script to the exclusion of all other scripts.
 
The bone of contention was that the books written in scripts other than Devanagri were not considered for awards by Sahitya Akademi and, on cue, by other organizations and institutions too. It was a gross injustice to the writers engaged in literary work in Konkani in scripts other than Devanagari.


To a pointed question of Edwin JF DSouza whether Sahtya Akademi recognized the script or the literature, Sunil Gangopadhyaye, President said in an unambiguous term “literature!” The argument should have ended there but Pundalik Narayan Naik, Convener of Konkani Language Advisory Board cited the Govt of India notifications recognizing the Devanagari script as the official one and also referred to the previous discussion on the subject in the General Council of Sahitya Akademi that remained inconclusive.

However, the majority of General Council Members did not approve that the literature created in the same language but different scripts should be discriminated against when the bulk of Konkani literature was written in Kannada, Roman and other scripts, according to DSouza.
 
The Members argued that in the hi-tech age of advanced computer programmes where, on a click of the mouse the script can be changed from one script to the other, there was no reason why books written in scripts other than Devanagari should remain out of the purview of awards.
 
After a prolonged discussion Mr. Sunil Gangopadhyaye, (seen with Edwin JF Dsouza in the picture), President of the Sahitya Akademi promised the Members that the matter will be referred to the Language Development Board of Sahitya Akademi for an early resolution.


Edited and Published By Konkanifriends.com


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