Media Release

Mangaluru, June 7 : A tribute programme for the recently departed senior Konkani litterateur , organizer, and president of the Konkani Writers and Artists Association, Sikeram Surathkal, was held at Bendoor Mini Hall on the evening of Wednesday, on 5th June, 2024, coinciding with his 70th birthday. The tribute program was inaugurated by Sikeram's youngest admirer, little Joan Naira Moras, who offered flowers to his portrait.

Mrs. Eulalia D’Souza spoke about the life of Ronald Joseph Sequeira, popularly known by his pen name Sikeram Surathkal, shedding light on various facets of his unique, compassionate , and enthusiastic personality. She said, “Ronald was proficient in twelve languages and had extensive knowledge not only of Konkani and Kannada but also of Hindi songs. He could sing songs by Wilfy Rebimbus and Mohammed Rafi without referring to paper. He was attending tabla classes after 65 years of age. A member of the Amateur Radio Club, he was a regular on HAM radio. He was also a member of the International Toastmasters Club. Quietly, he helped many underprivileged students with their education. He never forgot to be the first to wish everyone he knew on their birthdays, wedding anniversaries, and other special occasions.”

Speaking about Sikeram Surathkal’s short stories and essays, Wilson Kateel, the editor of Arso newspaper, said, “In each of his short stories, the main characters were predominantly men and women from agricultural families. He had a rare talent for using elements like the farmer’s whip, used during plowing, as a metaphor in his stories, thereby weaving poetry into his narratives. Although he wrote fewer poems compared to his stories and essays, he authored significant poems in contemporary Konkani poetry.”

On this occasion, a special edition of ‘Arso’ brought out on the life and literature of Sikeram was released by Kavita Trust President, poet Kishoo Barkur. H.M. Pernal, publisher of Arso, Designer Eddie Sequeira, and editorial board members Roshu Bajpe, Stany Bela, and Alphonse Mendonca were present on this occasion.

The office bearers and members of the Mangalore Amateur Radio Club were present at the event, where the song “Ninna Kaanuva Hambala,” written by the late club member Ronald Sequeira, was composed and sung by NITK professor Dr. Lakshminidhi. Another member of the radio club, NITK professor Dr. K.V. Gangadharan, shared details about Ronald Sequeira’s close association with the ham amateur radio clubs in Mangalore, Surathkal, and Manipal in the Dakshina Kannada district.

Peter Alvin D’Souza, representing the Konkani International Toastmasters Club, of which Ronald Sequeira was a member, also spoke and paid tribute to him.

The Executive Council Member and convenor of Konkani Advisory Board at Sahitya Akademi, New Delhi poet Melvyn Rodrigues, recited a poem written by poet H M Pernal in memory of Sikeram Surathkal, paying tribute to him.

Ronald Joseph Sequeira’s wife, Mrs. Gracy, and daughter, Ms. Reema, were present at the event.

Reema spoke on behalf of the family, expressing that organizing this event on Ronald’s 70th birthday was meaningful.

The event was attended by dignitaries from all walks of life. MCC Bank Chairman Anil Lobo, Edu Care Scholarship Scheme CEO Stephen Pinto, Senior Chartered Accountant R.D. Shastri, Linguist Prof. Dr. Zita Lobo, Award-winning senior Konkani writer Ron Roche Cassia, social worker Mahesh Lester, Director of Orchid Art Gallery and renowned English writer William Pais, Roshan Matha, Sonia Crasta, Robert Madanthyar, and other dignitaries paid tribute.

Writer Publisher H.M. Pernal delivered the introductory speech and welcomed the gathering and family members.

Eddie Sequeira compered the event, and poet and thinker Titus Noronha proposed vote of thanks.

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