Pics: Dayanand Kukkaje
Daijiworld Media Network - Mangaluru (SB)
Mangaluru, Apr 2: Konkani Writers and Artists Association (KWAA) organized Konkani book release and Face-to-Face interaction with renowned Chicago-based Konkani writer and social worker Dr Austin D'Souza Prabhu at Orchid Gallery here on Saturday, April 1.
In the first part of the programme, 'Garjek Podath', a collection of short stories written by KWAA president Ronald Sequeira was released by Austin D'Souza Prabhu. Executive editor of Arso magazine Wilson Kateel introduced the book to the gathering.
Writer Ronald Sequeira, also known by his pen name Sikeram Suratkal, said, "My stories are simple. They come from soil. Simple life of my parents and relatives from older generations, their devotion to humanity and their discipline made me reflect for years and now at the age of 63, I have come up with my first book. I thank all my readers for their support. I cannot forget the support of my family and some writers who helped me to venture into literature."
In the second part of the programme, Austin D’Souza Prabhu was felicitated by MLA J R Lobo, founder of Vishwa Konkani Kendra Basti Vaman Shenoy and Daijiworld founder Walter Nandalike.
After the felicitation, Walter Nandalike introduced Austin D'Souza Prabhu to the audience. Austin’s achievements till he left for Chicago in 1981 were highlighted first. Walter mentioned that Austin was running 3 Konkani periodicals as editor and also he was holding many important posts in diocese level in youth and cultural activities. His days in ICYM, Konkani Natak Sabha and Kala Sampath were hailed.
Walter also mentioned post-1981 days of Austin where he excelled as Lions Club member and governor in USA, "Austin reached places which we can only dream of. Austin donated without expecting any returns. He helped all the people who approached him from motherland. It is very difficult to find a gem like Austin," Walter said. He also recollected the difficulties Austin faced during his heydays.
In the face-to-face interaction that followed, many fans asked questions to Austin relating to his life and achievements.
"During my younger days I received a lot of opportunities to lead the community and to exhibit my talents. Drama was my passion. At the age 22, I was editing 3 Konkani magazines and also I took up responsible posts in various organizations. I never got tired. Disciplined life and love for my mother tongue made everything possible for me. I became governor of Lions Club twice. The fighting spirit and the determination to achieve the goal helped me to attain success in distant land Chicago also.
"Discipline always makes leadership stronger. The love of motherland and humanity brings all of us together. Let arrogance not take over the humility in you. You dream anything; you will get it with hard work. Walk more, eat less, work more and you will do wonders," Austin said in his message to fans. Austin came to Mangaluru after 7 years.
Earlier, secretary of KWAA Florine Roche welcomed the gathering. Austin D’Souza and Daijiworld founder Walter Nandalike were welcomed with bouquets by poet Melvyn Rodrigues and Orchid Gallery director William Pais respectively.
Roshan Madtha rendered vote of thanks. H M Pernal compered the programme and moderated the interaction.