Mangalore, March 6, 2014, DHNS:

MLA J R Lobo hands over appointment order to Ronald S Castelino in Mangalore on Thursday. DH Photo

 ‘Focus will be on overall development of Konkani language, culture’

 Ronald S Castelino, popularly known as Roy Castelino took charge as the President of Karnataka Konkani Sahitya Academy here on Thursday.

 Speaking after taking the charge, he said that the focus will be on overall development of Konkani language and culture. “I will focus on promoting Konkani education in schools. For Konkani language to sustain, children have to develop an interest in reading Konkani books,” he said.

 Stating that Konkani as third optional language in schools played a vital role in popularising Konkani, he said that he will continue the work in Konkani in schools.

 “Earlier, the Academy President used to have handicap in implementing the programmes as the Academy members were appointed by the State government after several months of taking charge. This time, the government has appointed the members along with the appointment of the President.

 As a President, I can nominate three members. My focus will be on a GSB community from Mangalore, a Konkani representative in Bangalore and a Konkani representative from Kasargod settled in Mangalore while nominating the members to the Academy,” he said.

 Roy Castelino, a Mangalorean is an entrepreneur in construction industry. He headed the NGO Konkani Prachar Sanchalan. He is also a director of Sandesha Foundation for former president of Rachana.

 MLA J R Lobo said that the Academy President should carry on with the criticisms while implementing the works. It is a good move that Konkani was started as a third optional language in schools. However, kids should converse in Konkani for the development of the language. Many a time, Konkani speaking people speak English at home.

 Konkani Academy former president Eric Ozario said that the correspondences from the Academy to the government should be in Konkani.

 “Initially, the selection to the Academy was purely political. However, it has changed now and the government has started giving emphasis to all the Konkani speaking communities.”

 “Konkani is spoken by 41 communities from three religions in the country. The Academy should reach all the communities in Karnataka. As a Academy President, I had organised Ghar Ghar Konkani, wherein programmes were held in the houses of Konkani speaking people and tried to reach all the communities,” said immediate past president Kasargod Chinna.

 Konkani Academy former presidents Basthi Vaman Shenoy, Narayana Kharvi and Registrar B Devadas Pai were present.

 Courtesy: Deccan Herald