Mangalore: Ronald Colaco launches Mandd Sobhann Konkani Museum project
Pics: Dayanand Kukkaje
Daijiworld Media Network – Mangalore (VM)
Mangalore, Jun 16: Konkani Museum, the mega project undertaken by Mandd Sobhann, was launched by NRI entrepreneur and philanthropist Ronald Colaco at Hotel Ocean Pearl here on Saturday June 15.
Colaco launched the project by unveiling the museum logo, while chief guest James Mendonca, president of Mangalore Konkans, Dubai released the brochure.
Forest, environment and ecology minister Ramanath Rai, MLA J R Lobo, Stany Alvares, Mandd sobhan president, gurkar Eric Ozario shared the dais.
Addressing the gathering after launching the project, Colaco said, "If we go by the track record, any work undertaken by Mandd Sobhann will undoubtedly be successful. It has taken Konkani language to greater heights, and has the capability to produce everything from nothing."
He added, "The Konkani Museum project is a very good and bold step taken by Mandd Sobhann, through which the true beauty and essence of the culture can be showcased."
Lauding Konkani activist and Mandd Sobhann gurkar Eric Ozario and his team, Colaco said because of their selfless work, great personalities from former president of India to Bollywood stars have made their way to Kalaangann.
"Since 1991 I have been associated with the Mandd Sobhann; undoubtedly, they have rendered vast contribution to the Konkani community and I am sure they will not stop," said Colaco.
On the occasion, Colaco gifted Rs 80 lac (for 25 cents of land for the museum) to Mandd Sobhann. He also asked people to lend their support to the project.
James Mendonca in his address lauded Mandd Sobhann for all its good and productive work and said that it has made not only Konkani people but people of all sections of society proud.
"The 40 lac Konkani people should shower their blessings and render their support to this project. The museum will also act as a source of information. So far Mandd Sobhann has done very good work and shown its ability in all the tasks it has undertaken. I am sure that it will succeed in its new museum project too," he said.
"Konkani museum is one of the biggest gifts from Mandd Sobhann to the Konkani people," Mendonca added.
MLA J R Lobo said that it is a tough task to collect money and get items for museum. "All aspects of Konkani should be covered in the museum. When we visit the museum, we should get the feeling of being transported to another era. This project will definitely boost tourism in Mangalore. The most important thing is how to collect ancient artifacts - if this is done, a major part of the museum is done," he said.
Ramanath Rai said that Mandd Sobhann has undertaken a good and important project, and wishing that it gets good support from people, assured that the state government will always be ready to help.
Eric Ozario in his welcome address thanked Ronald Colaco, Jamed Mendonca and others who have rendered financial support to the project. Elaborating on the project, he said, "Mandd Sobhann has always strived hard to protect Konkani, promote it and pass it on to the next generation. One of the biggest project undertaken by Mandd Sobhann is the Konkani Museum, a world class project planned at an estimated of Rs 30 crore. In this museum all the aspects of Konkani like its history, migratory route of Konkani people, milestones, contributions, festivals, celebrations, art, food, instruments, utensils etc will be exhibted."
He added, "The main challenge is to buy one acre land next to Kalaangann in the next five months, that is by November. The land costs Rs 3.5 crore and another Rs 25 lac is needed for registration, so altogether it will cost nearly Rs 4 crore. We plan to seek funds from public, Unesco, and the government. The previous BJP government had assured Rs 2 crore for this project, but we have urged the present government to raise this amount to Rs 5 crore. Once these formalities are done, with the help of Unesco and others, research and documentation work relating to Konkani people across the country will be done at a cost of Rs 2 crore."
"We plan to complete and inaugurate the museum by November 30, 2016, the year Mandd Sobhann completes 30 years," he said.
He thanked everyone who has helped so far with the project. The one acre land of by Makale farms is being provided by the Basti family. Louis Pinto and Eric Correa have come forward to help bear the registration cost. So far, 55 percent of the land cost has been collected.
Ashok Mendonca, architect of of the project who also designed Kalaangann, said that the project will have two parts - an open space where exhibitions will be held, and a five floor building where the ground floor will consist of offices and conference rooms, and in each of the other floors there will be six galleries. The parking lot will have a capacity for 109 cars, he said.
Stany Alvares welcomed the gathering while Irene Rebello, secretary of Mandd Sobhann thanked. Arun Raj Rodrigues compered.
Louis J Pinto, Fr William Menezes, Fr Boniventure Nazareth, Naveen Lobo, Basti Vaman Shenoy, Raghunath Shet, Roy Castelino, Eric Correa and others were present.