Sunday 21 July 2024

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Not migration or land, Goan identity threatened with 'less' Konkani: CS


CS B Vijayan with Konkani Academy award winners

Goa chief secretary B Vijayan has said that Goan identity is not threatened due to sale to land to outsiders or migration of outsiders but the reducing population of Goans speaking, learning and writing Konkani.

He has thus appealed to Goans to increase Konkani-speaking population to preserve Goan identity rather than fighting over scripts and embracing English as the medium of instruction.

At an award distribution ceremony of Goa Konkani Academy held at Kala Academy Black Box on Friday, Vijayan spoke at length, with facts and figures, the plight of Konkani.

“This is my personal opinion and not the government opinion”, he however clarified.

Quoting 2001 census figures, Vijayan pointed out that Konkani-speaking people are only 7.5 lakh in a 14-lakh strong state of Goa while non-Konkani speaking people are almost half of it.

Three lakh among them are Marathi-speaking, 1.5 lakh are Hindi-speaking and the rest speak other Indian languages.

While admitting that this is the result of in-migration, he observed that migration cannot be stopped since Goa needs the migrant labour.

On the other hand, Vijayan pointed out that the net replacement rate in Goa is below one while net reproduction (birth) rate is 1.7.

“It means Goan population is declining and needs to increase, otherwise we will be a minority in our own state”, cautioned the chief secretary.

Goa should not be like Assam and Tripura where the local tribals are outnumbered by Bengalis and Konkani person would be seen only in museums in next 100 years, as a rare spices.

He also termed it ‘most unfortunate’ the increasing trend of ‘opposing’ own mother tongue Konkani as the medium of instruction even at primary level while embracing English.

Narrating his experience that English-medium Goans in the administration neither know English properly nor their own mother tongue Konkani, he said he could pick up several languages since the base was laid down in his own mother tongue in the school.

“Our English would be better if we have a good English teacher and not English as our medium”, felt Vijayan.

In addition, he observed that Konkani people are divided over Romi and Devnagari scripts while language issue is being politicized and script issue is being communalized.

“The need of the hour is not to fight over scripts but to unify the Konkani-speaking community”, said Vijayan.

He also advised Goa Konkani Academy to take up the work at priority level to increase the population of speaking, learning and writing Konkani rather than concentrating only on producing Konkani literature.

The audience comprised of veteran Konkani writers, artists, educationists as well activists while quite a few of them were on the dais, receiving awards in literature, activism and life-time contribution to Konkani literature and movement. is now on Telegram & also Youtube. Kindly subscribe for free & remain updated.

Total Comments :2

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Thanks to CS Mr. Vijayan. It is sad that a non Goan non Konkani person is stressing this point to would be butlerised English Goenkars.

Madhav Bastodkerm , PondaI

Change The Konkani Devnagri Script Into Konkani Roman Script And Konkani Takers Will Increase. No One Is Interested In Konkani Devnagri Script. Marathi Should Be Optional Language Along With Hindi, French, Etc. MoI Must Be English And Konkani In Devnagri Or Roman Script.

Jose Rod , Goa