Goa: Konkani (Roman Script) V/s Marathi?

November 1, 2013 by  
Filed under newsletter-india

Sent: Saturday, October 26, 2013 10:25 PM

Demand to declare Romi Konkani (in Roman script) and Marathi as the Official Languages of Goa

Official Languages of GoaAttempts are being made to sabotage the genuine demand of getting recognition to the ‘Romilipi konkani’ which has been in existence not only in Goa but Maharashtra and Mangalore. Churches have Konkani masses with the prayers written in Romilipi…

It will be in the interest of Konkani lovers in Goa to check the precedents of those out to destroy Konkani, with the likes of other Marathi protagonists.
It will be of interest to note, that the people of Goa who migrated to ‘Bomaim’ still speak Konkani in their homes, the Goan Christian calls himself ‘Goan’ but the Goan Hindu in Mumbai calls himself a ‘Marathi Manoos’. Hence if one was to keep a Goan Hindu and a Goan Christian side by side and ask 10 Mumbaikars to identify a Goan, not a single person will point to the Goan Hindu, because he is seen as a Maharashtra, calling himself a Marathi Manoos.

Fr. Pratap Naik’s proposal for granting official status to Marathi along with Konkani Romilipi is a disaster in waiting – a last nail in the coffin of Konkani, be it Romilipi or Devnagari. Just like the ‘Modilipi’ which was in use in Maharashtra for the last 700 hundred years. The script refined by Hemandpant during the reign of Mahadev and Ramdev Yadav (1260 – 1309) was used for writing until 1950 – when Devnagari Marathi came into use.

It is sad to know that the Modilipi used by the great Maratha king, Shri Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Bhajirao Peshwa, Ramshastri Prabhune, Justice Ranade, Mahatma Jyotiba Phule, Poet B. R. Tambe, and many others. Even Sant Dnyaneshwar wrote the Dnayeshwari in Modilipi… Today the Modilipi is relegated to the doldrums, only because of the Devnagri Marathi. The same fate awaits Konkani – the mother tongue of Goa – if Marathi is given official status in Goa.

An opinion is prevalent that the Maharastravadis having failed in their attempt to merge Goa with Maharashtra, have come up with this new plan. Once successful they will waste no time to demand once again for the merger on the basis that Goa is a Marathi speaking state, just as they are demanding for Belgaum and Karwar and other Marathi speaking areas in other states. This is specially true because states in India have been formed on the basis of language, which serves as a bonding factor.

It seems that the likes of Fr. Pratap Naik have unwittingly been roped in by the Marathi protagonists for their own hidden agenda. Goans need to be alert and campaign for a script that does not see Konkani becoming extinct, Modilipi has become.

– deven mathews

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