During the course of our visits to several places from New Delhi to Kochi in 1994-1995 for the purpose of organising of First World Konkani Convention- 1995, I found a great thrust among Konkani people to come together in the name of our mother tongue Konkani, to find the roots, our heritage and a desire to develop Konkani language, art and culture, Literature, folklore, Music etc. I also found an urge among heads of various Konkani organisations, Institutions, leading lights in the field of Konkani literature and culture to have a World Konkani Centre to fulfil their aspirations.
The above desire was discussed at length by prominent Konkani leaders during 7 days’ World Konkani Convention-1995’ and at the Valedictory, a resolution was passed to construct `World Konkani Centre’ at Mangalore and authorised Konkani Bhasha Mandal to take steps in this direction.
Soon after the First World Konkani Convention, I, as President of Konkani Bhasha Mandal, in 1996 initiated the process of preparation of Constitution and to form Konkani Language and Cultural Foundation(Konkani Bhas Ani Samskriti Pratistan). Special General Body Meeting of members of Konkani Bhasha Mandal at Mangalore was called and I presented the draft copy of the Konkani Pratistan. With few alterations here and there a final decision was taken unanimously to found Konkani Bhas Ani Samskriti Pratistan by all the members present and the draft constitution was adopted. Thus the Konkani Bhas Ani Samskriti Pratistan came into being in 1996 and a sum of Rs.14.00 lakhs was transferred to the Pratistan as Corpus Fund by Konkani Bhasha Mandal. I am quite sure that the Constitution adopted is a comprehensive one and will fulfill the aspirations of Konkani people.
While preparing the Constitution of the Konkani Bhas Ani Samskriti Pratistan, we had taken the ideas from Konkani people residing at places and regions from Delhi to Kochi and even from Konkani people living abroad. And we also thought it necessary and advantageous to give representations to Konkani people from various regions and places in the Executive Committee (Board of Trustees) of Konkani Bhas Ani Samskriti Pratistan.
The following clauses were included:-
I made it a point to have 4 members in each category of membership, i.e., 4 members elected from Life Members Category, 4 members elected from Patrons Category and 4 members from Donors’ Category, etc., so that the Konkani Language and Cultural Foundation could get the leading lights among the Konkani people from various places in India and abroad to its fold and get the benefit of their rich experience in the activities of Konkani literature, culture, art and music and folklore and people with organisational skills.
Finally there is no election to the Category of Patron Trustees i.e., those who donate Rs.5.00 lakhs and above as those philanthropists would be taken as permanent members in the Board of Trustees (Executive body of Konkani Pratistan), since those people are generous to donate big sums to the Pratistan with great interest and love on the mother tongue Konkani and Konkani culture, etc. Konkani Pratistan can always bank upon their continued patronage to further its cause in future also. And members who attended the Special General Body Meeting of Konkani Bhasha Mandal convened to form the Pratistan had unanimously passed the Constitution with the above clauses. And I wish these ideals will be borne in mind by Board of Trustees, members of Konkani Pratistan and donors to World Konkani Centre and the whole Konkani Community in future years also.
Now, after the construction of World Konkani Centre, to give a real meaning and credence to the ideals and to make the World Konkani Centre a credible Institution and responsive to the aspirations of Konkani people, and to be a effective tool to promote, develop and strengthen the bonds I wish to record herebelow my thoughts:
World Konkani Centre does not belong to one place, region, caste or religion; it should be a conglomeration of all in the fields of Konkani literature, art and culture, folklore and of leaders in different Konkani fields and activities so that their experience and knowledge shall be pooled for the benefit of World Konkani Centre so that Konkani literature, art and culture, folklore will be taken to World level.
World Konkani Centre shall have its own programmes, Seminars, Workshops, on Literature, art & cultural, folklore, etc. not only in Mangalore but also other parts of the Country and abroad directly organising or with the help of local Konkani Associations, Institutions, Govt. agencies, Kendra Sahitya Academy, Konkani Bhasha Mandals affiliated to All India Konkani Parishad in India etc. World Konkani Centre may also organise various Konkani activities by sponsoring or funding the events planned by Konkani Organisations, Associations and Institutions, connected with development of Konkani literature, Konkani art and culture, Konkani folklore etc. in any part of the world.
Since the work is stupendous one, in my opinion, we(Konkani Pratistan) cannot reach out to many Organisations or Institutions and even Government sponsored bodies like Konkani Academies in States and Universities, it is necessary the Konkani Pratistan has to form various advisory bodies and sub-committees under World Konkani Centre for different purposes as being done by Government of India like Kendra Sahitya Academy and other Academies so as to cater to the needs of various subjects i.e., Konkani Literature, Art and Culture, performing arts, folkarts, media and journalism and most importantly Research work in Konkani so that with the combined efforts of these advisory bodies and sub-committees, World Konkani Centre fulfil the aspirations of Konkani people living in various parts of the world. In one sentence, I like to mention here that World Konkani Centre shall strive to function as a Central facility for all the Konkani activities mentioned above.
It is also quite essential that World Konkani Centre encourage local Registered bodies, Institutions and Government sponsored Konkani Academies in States and Universities to prepare plans and projects (both short term and long term) and consider giving financial assistance, or sponsor Joint ventures depending on the funds available with World Konkani Centre for such works considering the necessities, effectiveness and usefulness of the plans and projects as per advise received by our advisory Boards and sub-committees.
This will surely fulfil the objectives laid down in the Constitution of Konkani Language and Cultural Foundation and the spirit behind establishing World Konkani Centre.
1)Funds : World Konkani Centre shall find various Government, Semi Government agencies, and Government Departments meant for such work, World Agencies like UNESCO, etc., Universities, Foundations and Trusts bodies founded by Konkani people World around for pooling contributions for World Konkani Centre projects on a permanent or short term basis.
The rules and regulations may be laid down by World Konkani Centre itself from time to time taking into confidence the respective advisory bodies, sub-committees which may be changed and a new approach with change of times may be adopted so that the World Konkani Centre works would not be effected by dogmatic and stagnant rules and regulations.
2. Regarding formation of Academies and sub-committees (nomenclature may be changed) the following are suggested:
- World Konkani Sahitya Academy
- World Konkani Sangeeth, Nritya Academy
- World Konkani Nataka Academy
- World Konkani Lokaveda Academy
- World Konkani Library Committee
- World Konkani Museum Committee
- Vishwa Konkani Bhasha Samsthan(World Konkani Research Centre)
Dev Bare Koro
Basti Vaman Shenoy