- Media Release

Bangalore, Aug 22008: The Konkani-speaking Catholic citizens of Koramangala, Madivala, BTM Layout, Jayanagar, JP Nagar, Wilson Garden and surrounding areas, led by Alwyn Mendonca and William Pinto, came together to form an association of their own on November 23, 1997 under the guidance of Fr Rolphy D Silva, the then parish priest of St Antony’s Church, Madivala, with a noble intention of bringing together all the Konkani-speaking families living here. The intention was warmly embraced and an association was formed with the following founder members: Alwyn Mendonca, William Pinto, B V Pinto, Maria Pinto, Andrea Pinto, Charles Menezes, Raymond Quadros, Denis Pereira, Lawrence Saldanha, Mark D’Souza, Melwyn Pereira, Patrick Buthello, Henry Miranda, Nithin Rodrigues, Jerry D Souza and the late A M Almeida.

The organization was christened as “The Bangalore Konkani Catholic Sangh (BKCS)”. The aims of the sangh are:

  • To bring together all the Konkani Catholics residing in the above areas and to chalk out programmes in religious, cultural, educational and social areas
  • To help the needy and poor Catholics of Konkani society in their ill health or education for children
  • To render financial help, moral support and sympathies during the death of any member.
  • To provide information and other timely assistance to the unemployed youth of the community
  • To render legal advice and assistance to all people who are in legal problems and to assist people to settle disputes between members’ families amicably by peaceful means
  • To render assistance in respect of marriage alliance of the members and to chalk out programmes in this direction
  • To conduct such other activities and to render service to the community by collaborating with other similar organizations 

A small group of 16 members who came together to set up the Sangh in 1997, has swelled into more than 460 families in 2008. The BKCS was officially registered on November 15, 2000. The Sangh has obtained exemption under Section 80G of the Indian Income Tax Act. A general body meeting of members is conducted every year and office-bearers are elected for a two-year term. The organization is presently guided by president Denis Pereira, secretary Benedicta Veigas and treasurer Michael Rego.

The BKCS has rendered yeomen service to the society in general and its members, in particular. Starting with a donation to the church building fund of St Anthony’s Friary, the Sangh has participated in all important national events like pulse polio programme, blood donation, education of slum children, donation of ECG machine to Patrao hospital Puttur, donation of TV to the cancer patients of Kidwai Hospital, donation of a wheel-chair to a patient in St John’s Hospital, donation of a TV to Indira Gandhi Children's Health Centre, donation of a computer to Abhaya Ashram etc. The association has taken care of talented children of its members, who could not afford higher education by financially supporting them.

The BKCS also conducted a free eye check up camp in 2007 for the slum dwellers and economically weaker sections of society. A total of 210 people were examined, 120 spectacles were donated free of cost and 34 eye operations were conducted in this camp.

The BKCS members actively participated in sports and cultural events conducted by KONCAB and have won many prizes, winning laurels to the Sangh. The Sangh has encouraged talent exposition among members and has provided a platform for exhibiting them.

In 2006 and 2007, BKCS conducted “Konkan Sports cum Food Fest”, in which about 1200 people from all Konkani Associations of Bangalore participated. The BKCS also organized three fund raising public programmes.

The BKCS has purchased a site on Hosur Road and registered it on March 29, 2008. There is a plan to construct about 4,000 Sq. ft. building ‘BKCS Bhavan’ at an estimated cost of Rs. 35 lac and utilize it for Sangh activities as well as to accommodate poor and needy students.

The journey which began in 1997, has reached a significant milestone of 10 years and the association is organizing the Decennial celebrations on August 3, 2008. The highlight of this celebration is a Musical Nite being presented by Richard Castelino, Konkani and Tulu films producer and director.

The Sangh has been fulfilling the objectives for which it was set up and is looking forward to continue its journey in the future.

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