What does Parrikar’s MoI policy mean?

By Sandesh Prabhudesai (EdiThought)
04 June 2012 23:37 IST

As expected, chief minister Manohar Parrikar followed the suit of his predecessor Digambar Kamat and surrendered his Bharatiya Janata Party before the Church, to work out a ‘political’ solution to the long-pending controversy over Medium of Instruction.  The only difference between the both is the language they used. The Congress said it is giving grants also to English medium schools. Parrikar said it would give grants only to Konkani and Marathi private primary schools, with an ‘exception’ to 105 schools, run by the ‘minority’ in English medium.

What does it actually mean?

Goa had total 1193 primary schools with 95,000 students studying at primary level. 141 among them were English medium schools running without grants with 25,900 students and five central government schools (also Bal Bhavan School) with 1700 students. Now, with Parrikar’s blessings, 105 schools run by Archdiocesan Board of Education would add to it, with 25,000 more students. It would mean total 53,000 students would learn English medium in 251 schools. Total 56 per cent students in English medium!

Marathi, Urdu or Kannada mediums won’t be affected with this since only Konkani medium schools run by the Church are shifting to English medium. Marathi would thus have total 878 schools with 32,000 students, in addition to 1000 students in Urdu and 1500 students in Kannada. It would comprise only 37 per cent students.

But the most affected would be Konkani, with only 62 schools – maximum among it are 33 government schools and 25 Archdiocesan schools, which shifted back to Konkani after the High Court warned of taking action. The total number of students remaining in these schools would be only 7000 – hardly eight per cent!

If Konkani is considered the only mother tongue, then only eight per cent would learn in it. But if Marathi, Urdu and Kannada also included in it, then it would rise to 44 per cent. But English definitely would have an upper hand. And with the government ‘compromise’ with English, the number may now simply slip down to any level.

There are few more lessons to learn from this decision.

If you listen to the court and get scared of contempt of court, you lose. Like 25 schools run by Archdiocesan Board schools lost the opportunity of ‘officially’ running their schools in English because they rolled back to Konkani. On the contrary, 105 Church-run schools, which refused to listen to the court, benefitted immensely.

Secondly, English would be now monopoly of only 246 schools out of total 1193 primary schools, which is only 21 per cent. These schools would control nearly 60 per cent of student community of Goa, studying in English medium.

Who benefits from it? Only the Church-run schools. Unaided English medium schools would still run with high fees.

Who suffers from it? Konkani and only Konkani!!!

In spite of this, our Konkani veterans and youngsters have welcomed the decision; of course with few exceptions… 

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Sandesh Prabhudesai (EdiThought)

Sandesh Prabhudesai is the Editor of goanews.com. He has been earlier the Editor of Sunaparant (Konkani daily) and Editor-in-Chief of Pruden (TV channel). His collection of selective editorials of Sunaparant has been published as 'Goff'. He writes brief thoughts as EdiThought for goanews.com, but not on regular basis.

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Previous Comments

v difficult to agree..

- lorna d`sa, margao | 07 th June 2012 22:22

 

Sandeshbab... I think more than just saying that Konkani is suffering its time to analyze why this is happening.

1. Very small population speaking this language when we consider a global scenario.

2. We have created invisible boundaries in Konkani... depending on religion, caste, region etc.

3. We have been unsuccessful to create job opportunities so people are forced to move to neighboring states for jobs where Marathi, Kannada, English helps them... If strong steps are not taken.. soon we will have Russian as the official language of Goa.

[Where I stay most of the children have left Goa for jobs and better career opportunities leaving only the old here.. so after another 10-15 years the entire generation of Konkani speakers will be settled out of Goa and their children will either speak English or the local tongue.]

4. No efforts have been really made to inculcate Konkani reading habit with the younger generations. Konkani cartoon strips / Konkani Comics / Konkani Super heros etc. etc. are the first step to create interest in kids.

5. Baring a few very less attempt has been done by Konkani writers to translate great literary works into Konkani.

6.After trying to get a maths or science book in konkani I am not being able to find one.. but I can easily find a maths or science book in English or Marathi.

7. We have just one Konkani news paper in Goa. That news paper too does not have its own website.. they have still not moved to unicode.

8. No NGO or Organisation who are working for Konkani are really thinking about Konkani.. its all about personal glory...

9. You are still having this site in English for the very same reason.. the reach... I am still commenting in English... so more people can understand.

Thats all I can think about now.. but one thing for sure... till the time we do not create enough knowledge base in konkani saying that konkani is suffering does not make any sense.

Attempts will have to be made at individual level to create that reach ... not every thing can be done by the Government.

In this world of demand and supply we cannot force supply if there is no demand.

- Venkatesh Prabhu, Mapusa | 07 th June 2012 00:17

 

THIS IS A SLOW POISONING OF KONKANI...The Portuguese clergy in the 16th/17th/18th century did that before..next generation may not even speak a broken Konkani..let alone read and write.... the language shall DIE ! Many languages have died ..many more `ll die ! The obituary is clearly written...in English with Roman script !..

- Lina Vaz, Betal batim | 06 th June 2012 13:57

 

What is your problem if these many students want to go in for English medium?

- Apurva, Ponda | 06 th June 2012 13:39

 

THANKS SANDESH NICE AND CLEAR ARTICLE

- NUTAN, MAPUSA | 05 th June 2012 23:16

 

Good article. it explains role of Mnaohar Parrikar. one thing i would like to mention is here that marathi private instituions (whoes trustee are RSS members) would benefited by distant relaxtion policy. Now these educational institutions can open their schools mainly in north goa and some part of south (where RSS roots are strong).

Earlier they were forced to open their primay schools in english due to govt marathi primary schools with in one kilometer distant.

Thanku Sir for spilling .......................

- Mahesh Ghadi, Panjim | 05 th June 2012 13:28

 

I am neither happy nor sad about the decision taken by our current Chief Minister.

However i feel that grants should have been given to all schools irrespective of the MOI.

The decision of giving grants to both allows the parents to choose the MOI for their children who are the best to decide what is right for their children.

No one and i mean no one is better to decide what is right for their children other then then their parents. So neither the govt nor Mrs shashikala (who wanted Goa to be merged with Maharashtra) nor Mr bhembre nor F.O.R.C.E should decide what is right for other peoples children.

The C.M should be commended for this tactical decision taken by him. Hope the grand continues for years to come

- CLAY, VASCO | 05 th June 2012 13:21

 

Absolutely, Manoharbab surrendered his “Sarvasva” on MOI to church schools which dared to challenge court order.

The decision was absolutely disgrace to all the people who fought last several years for Konkani.

BTW, I was never in favour of grants only to Konkani or Marathi. I believe every school should be given grants.

However, Language Konkani (not Marathi) should be made compulsory for every school in Goa from Std 1 to atleast Std VII.

- Keny, Vasco | 05 th June 2012 09:55

 

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