‘19 Months in Salazar’s Prison’: Unknown Bengali book now in Konkani

K C Tyagi & Prof Anand Mense to release the book on 12 Oct

“Salazarache Bandkhannit Ekunnis Mhoine” (Nineteen Months in Salazar’s Prison), a Konkani translation of an originally Bengali book, will be released this week in Madgao. The book, unknown to Goa till yesterday, is a valuable addition to the history of Goa’s independence movement.

The 404-page book was written and published in Bengali by Tridib Choudhury, a seven-time Marxist MP from West Bengal. He had led one of the Satyagrahas in July 1955 and had entered from Bhironda village of Sattari taluka. He was the only MP of the Indian Parliament, who was arrested and imprisoned for 12 long years by the Portuguese colonialists. 

Tridib Choudhury in his young days

This book in Bengali, a sort of Jail Diary, was published in 1960, one year before Goa’s liberation. Mr Choudhury has not only narrated horrifying experiences of Goa’s liberation struggle but has also analysed the independence movement in the background of national and international politics of those days. It also throws light on many misconceptions being spread today about the Goa movement. 

A Konkani version of this book, translated by Goa’s eminent sociologist and educationist Dr Narayan Desai, and published by Dr Rammanohar Lohia Research Foundation of New Delhi, will be released on Thursday, 12 October 2023, at the Black Box of Ravindra Bhavan Madgao at 4.30 pm, on the occasion of 56th Death Anniversary of Dr Rammanohar Lohia. 

Dr Narayan Desai

The function would be chaired by K C Tyagi, a 73-year-old Socialist leader of India, a staunch Lohiaite and a two-time MP from Bihar. Prof Anand Mense, a retired principal, writer and Marxist ideologue from Belgavi, would be the Chief Guest. He has written 12 books, including one documenting the contribution of the Communist movement to Goa’s liberation struggle. His father Krishna Mense had played a leading role in Goa’s liberation.

Dr Sushila Mendes, a history researcher, columnist and daughter of a freedom fighter Adv Louis Mendes, will speak on the book. Dr Narayan Desai will also share his experience of translating the Bengali book into Konkani. A Konkani preface to this book is written by Sandesh Prabhudesai, a Goan journalist and son of freedom fighter parents. 

Dr Sushila Mendes

Abhishek Ranjan Singh, Chairman of Dr Rammanohar Lohia Research Foundation and a veteran journalist has taken the initiative to translate this 63-year-old book into English, Hindi and now into Konkani. The Foundation has also published rare books like ‘Action in Goa’ and ‘The Struggle of Civil Liberties’ by Dr Lohia in various Indian languages. 

Abhishek Ranjan Singh

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