Bangalore, Jan 31: "Federation Day" - FKCA's Annual get-together was held at St. Joseph's Indian High School grounds, Bangalore here on Sunday 31st January 2010. The programe began with a concelebrated Holy Mass in Konkani with Fr. Lawrence D'souza, Director of St. John's Hospital, as the main Celebrant at 9:30am. In his homily, Fr. Lawrence D'souza asked all the Christians to spread the message of love to the society.
Amidst a gathering of around 2000 people, his Excellency, the Governor of Karnataka, Shri. H.R Bhardwaj inaugurated the function which was presided by Archbishop of Bangalore, Rev. Dr. Bernard Moras. Karnataka Pradesh Congress President (KPCC) Shri R.V Deshpande was the Chief Guest for the function.
Chairman of the Federation, Shri Charles Gomes welcomed the gathering. General Secretary, Shri Naveen D'souza in his report, briefed the gathering about the activities of the Federation. Speaking on the occasion, Shri R.V Deshpande said that Konkani Catholics are the most peace loving people and Konkani is a beautiful language. He expressed concern on the recent church attacks which predominantly is taking place only in Karnataka compared to other states and echoed his sentiments and support to the Catholics on the same.
His Grace Most Rev. Bernard Moras, Archbishop of Bangalore requested Mangalore Christians to show leadership in the society and help the downtrodden.
His Excellency, Governor of Karnataka, H.R. Bhardwaj called the Christians as the light of the world and recalled the great contribution made by missionaries to the nation especially in the field of health care and education.
Three eminent Konkani Catholics, who have made a mark in the social, business and public life, were felicitated with the prestigious FKCA Awards. The three awardees are: Shri Wilfy Rebimbus, who was conferred the Life-Time Achievement Award. Shri Adrian Joseph D'souza, Director of Southern Power Equipment Co. Pvt. Ltd., Deccan Structural Systems Pvt. Ltd, Deccan Leather Fashions, Gibu Fabrications Pvt. Ltd, as the Entrepreneur Of The Year Award, and Shri Albert Tauro, Chairman and Managing Director, Vijaya Bank, Professional Excellence Award.
Shri Adrian Joseph D'Souza was awarded the Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Born in 1960, He is a successful businessman and industrialist involved in several leading manufacturing companies in the capital intensive Power Equipments, Structural Systems, Transformers and Leather Fashions. A rank-holder from Bangalore's leading Engineering College, R V College of Engineering, in Electrical Engineering, he joined his father's small sector business enterprise and through his vision, dedication and hard-work expanded it cover diverse fields and thereby opening new business and employment opportunities. Southern Power Equipment Co Pvt Ltd, Deccan Structural Systems Pvt Ltd, Deccan Leather Fashions and Gibu Fabrications Pvt Ltd, the four prominent companies in the Group having Sri D'Souza as Director, have the enviable distinction of providing direct employment to about 1,500 persons and a total annual turnover of over Rs 160 crore. His brilliance, dedication, hard-work and vision have turned him into an entrepreneur worthy of emulation and envy.
Shri Albert Tauro was awarded the Professional Excellence award. He is a leading banker with over 37 years of experience and turns 59 on March 11. Hailing as he does from the undivided coastal Dakshina Kannada district, which is known as the cradle of Indian Banking Industry, he began his banking career with Reserve Bank of India (RBI), Mumbai, in 1971 after his post-graduation in Commerce with CAIIB. He had his induction into commercial banking on September 10, 1975, when he left RBI to join Canara Bank as an officer. During his long career spanning over 32 years, he has served the bank in several places in different capacities. He rose to become the Executive Director of Central Bank of India on June 6, 2007, and also served as the member of the Board of Centbank Financial & Custodial Services Ltd and Centbank Home Finance Ltd. Sri Tauro is an experienced and multi-dimensional banker with extensive exposure to every conceivable area of banking. He was elevated as the Chairman and Managing Director of Vijaya Bank on August 2, 2008 and will continue in the position until superannuation till March 31, 2011.
Shri Wilfy Rebimbus was awarded the Lifetime Achievement award. He is a multi-faceted and versatile personality and turns 68 on April 2.. Known for his charming and affable nature, he is a gifted music composer, playwright and short story writer and is a household name among all Konkani Catholics. Born in Mangalore in a poor family, he came up in life the hard way and started composing and singing Konkani songs at the young age of 14. By 15, he had written his first Konkani play, ``Poishyamcho Somvsaar,'' and got it staged through the St Joseph's Natak Sabha in Mangalore. He has contributed and enriched the Konkani music world for over 50 years composing over 3,000 songs, 500 stage shows and conducted as many as 248 musical nites in Mangalore and different parts of Karnataka and even abroad besides publishing 9 volumes of Song Books. In addition, he has brought out a book, ``Kogul Gaaithaa,'' comprising 40 volumes in 4 editions, 40 highly popular music audio cassettes besides 6 volumes of devotional and 1 instrumental album. He has written 3 Konkani musical plays, Hazaar Umaalyamche Kazaar, Vechik Pooth and Mother Theresa. He has also composed songs and written stories for Konkani Movies, Mog ani Moipas, Bogsaane, Kaazaara Upraanth and Paadri besides writing the story for the Konkani film, Tisri Cheet. He has showered with several awards including the Karnataka Government's prestigious Rajyothsava Award, Karnataka Konkani Sahitya Academy Award, Sandesha and Daiji Puraskar Awards. His son, Vishwas Rebimbus received the award on his behalf.
Anil Rego proposed the Vote of Thanks. Smt. Albina Vaz compered the program in a highly professional way with extremely apt and meaningful introductions and references to each aspect of the function.
Mass and Choir arrangement was handled by Konkani Catholic Welfare Association, Rajajinagar, Stage Management by Konkani Samudai, Jayanagar and Ground Management and Reception Committee by Konkan Catholic Association, Mathikere. All the above responsibilities were meticulously planned and executed with precision by the respective associations. After the main function there was a cultural program presented by the member associations. Housie-Housie was conducted and there were lucky dip coupons with exciting prizes. Breakfast, snacks, chats and ethnic Mangalorean food was made available at the venue.
The Federation of Konkani Catholic Associations (FKCA), which was established in 1998, has spread its activities far and wide with as many as 25 Associations of Konkani Catholics not only in different localities of Bangalore but Mysore and also abroad with those in UAE, Kuwait, USA, Canada and UK affiliated to it. Many other Associations in Australia, New Zealand and other countries as also different parts of the country are in the process of getting affiliated to the FKCA.
Having emerged as strong and united voice of Konkani Catholics as also a champion in espousing the cause of other minorities, the Federation has taken up several people-friendly programmes like annual sports, free placement service cell, matrimonial cell, entrepreneurs' forum and free medical camps. It has also launched a worldwide directory of Konkani Catholics on its website, www.fkca.net. The Federation has helped over 60 members of its affiliated associations in getting house sites in well-developed and BMRDA approved housing sites on the Bangalore-Mangalore highway near Nelamangala, besides helping the needy by organizing regular programmes to create awareness and focus attention of their problems. It has also been regularly interacting with various governmental agencies and authorities.