Mangaluru, March 13, 2016: A conference was led by Konkani activist Eric Ozario and began with a debate session. One of the Goan writers pointed out that though Goa boasts of Devanagari used widely across state is not at all true. It is Konkani in Roman script that is more prevalent than Devanagari and imposing one script is not a good sign. "The use of Devanagari has benefitted only single community and it is not right to impose it on all," he protested.
Though the gathering had majority of Konkani writers from Kannada, Roman (English), Farsi, and Malayalam, the debate was carried out logically without bias.
Arguing why Devanagari is not fit to be official script and has no stand to claim as widely used script, experts presented a data where it pointed to a survey done eight years by Jesuits from Goa. It mentions that Konkani in Kannada script with more literature stands first, has dozens of periodicals, websites and more than 100 Church magazines, followed by Roman script and Devanagari stands in third place. "Announcing that it is superior from roof tops, Devanagari has been getting all the government facilities, funding even though there is no much contribution," writers and activists claimed.
Over the years, Devanagari script promoters are harping that theirs is a holy and natural script of Konkani, "By merely saying such things will not help to promote a script. They (Devanagari) have made no effort to teach it to people unaware of it and I have been observing this from past 40 years. The script is now asset of only superior class and it will die natural death just like Sanskrit," Eric lambasted.
The example of Goa state language ’Konkani’, during implementation coming with a rider that ’Konkani with only Devanagari script is official’, is an eye opener on how people supporting Devanagari are involved in cornering other script (Roman). "State language is for all beyond caste, creed, religion and community and what went wrong in Goa is that entire Konkani Sahitya Academy and Kala Academy is ruled by propagators of Devanagari and such development was expected," activists pointed out.
Konkani writers writing other scripts than Devanagari agreed in one voice that they will not opt for script converter to Devanagari from original works for being considered for akademi awards. They said unitedly, "If one’s work is eligible then award should come after him rather author going behind it. Give award for language not script. We are asking our rights and not begging with academy.’