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Sunday, April 22, 2007 10:53:01 PM (IST)  

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Mangalore: Rich Tributes Paid to Pioneer Konkani Poet Louis Mascarenhas

Inputs from Melka Miyar
for Daijiworld Media Network - Mangalore (MB)
Pics Vivek Studio, Mangalore

Mangalore, Apr 22: Glowing tributes were paid to the late Louis Mascarenhas, one of the pioneer poets of the twentieth century, who was also the founder-editor of Konknni Dirvem, on Sunday, April 22.

A function to remember the late poets life, times and works was organized by the Karnataka Konkani Sahitya Academy at ‘Shalom’ on Commander George Martis Road, Mallikatta here.

Eric Ozario, and portrait of the late poet

The late poet's daughters, Sr Noelin and Judy Mascarenhas

Prof Alban Castelino and Leo D'Souza

While speaking about the contributions of Louis Mascarenhas towards Konkani literature, Prof Alban Castelino, retired lecturer of St Aloysius College, said that because of him Konkani became the language of common people in the city. A century ago, it was only used by labour class in Mangalore and the rich people were using English for communication. In this critical condition, Louis Mascarenhas laid a firm foundation for the development of Konkani language, he added.

Louis Mascarenhas had studied so many languages. But he developed his command over Konkani. He was a born poet. His ever-lasting literature, ‘Abranvchem Yajnyadan’ is not only a great poem but also a great play. This literature is also selected as study material for A and B class exams of the union government. No other poet had penned such a rich poem of depth and content in the Konkani literary world, he emphasized.

In 1912 he founded the magazine ‘Konknni Dirvem’ which promoted Konkani language and literature. It stopped being published around 1940. Later the void created by it was filled by ‘Raknno’ Konkani weekly, he opined.

Konkani writer-poet Leo D’Souza ("Liyab") said that although he had no direct contact with the late Louis Mascarenhas, yet he was largely inspired by him.

Daughters of Louis Mascarenhas, Sr Noeline and Judith Mascarenhas (former deputy mayor of the city) were present on the dais.

Eric Ozario, president of Konkani Sahitya Academy welcomed the gathering. Titus Noronha compered the programme. A poetry recitation session was also held.

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