Kannada Sahitya Parishat
Kannada Saahithya Parishath (Kannada: ಕನ್ನಡ ಸಾಹಿತ್ಯ ಪರಿಷತ್ತು) is an Indian non-profit organisation that promotes the Kannada language. Its headquarters is in the city of Bangalore, in the state of Karnataka, India. It strives to promote Kannada through publishing books, organising literary seminars and promoting research projects. It also organises an annual conference on Kannada literature called Kannada Sahithya Sammelana.
During the British rule of India, the people who spoke Kannada language were spread across different provinces. Coming under the influence of different languages in those provinces, the pronunciation and grammar of Kannada language started to differ across provinces. This led to a gap in communication across the people in these provinces though they spoke the same language of Kannada.Mokshagundam Vishweshwaraiah, who was the Diwan of the Mysore Kingdom felt the need to conserve and promote the Kannada language and literature. In this direction, he started the Mysore Economic Conference and created a study circle under the responsibility of H. V. Nanjundaiah. A sub-committee formed under the study circle came up with five different topics on which suggestions were invited:
- To come up with ideas to promote unity and co-operation among Kannada speakers spread across different regions.
- To come up with suggestions for a common written Kannada which had diversified across different regions
- To ensure that students learning Kannada language use a common text book
- To improve the general knowledge among the Kannada speaking population by publishing appropriate books.
- To come up with appropriate Kannada translations for words used in other languages, especially the scientific words.
The sub-committee received good responses from the public and it decided to organise a conference in Bangalore on 3 May 1915 to act upon these suggestions. The conference was held on the grounds of the Government High School and was attended by littérateurs, newspaper editors and other dignitaries from different regions. The conference came up with a proposal to create the Karnataka Sahitya Parishat with a mandate to conserve and promote Kannada language and literature. H. V. Nanjundaiah was unanimously elected to be the President of the Parishat. Apart from the Mysore province, the Karnataka Sahitya Parishat was simultaneously started in the Madras, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Kodagu provinces.
H. V. Nanjundaiah remained as President of the Parishat for the first five years of its creation. In 1935, a proposal to conduct an annual event under the aegis of the Parishat called as Kannada Sahitya Sammelana was decided. The foundation ceremony of a separate building to house the Parishat was organised on 12 April 1937 under the Presidentship of Karpura Srinivas Rao. The construction of this building was completed on 29 May 1938. B M Srikantaiah was the Vice President of the Parishat from 1938 till 1942. In 1938, the name of Karnataka Sahitya Parishat was changed to Kannada Sahitya Parishat. Under the guidance of B M Srikantaiah, the logo of the Parishat containing the map of the Mysore province with the phrase Sirigannadam gelge, Kannada Sahitya Parishat written inside it was created. Over the period of time; a women's wing, a publishing house, a Kannada journal and literature exams were also added to the repertoire of the Parishat. Kannada Sahitya Parishat branches at the district and taluk levels were also created. A new building is being constructed to replace the exiting building of the Parishat at a cost of Rupees five crores. During its existence, the Parishat has contributed to the growth of Kannada language by organising conferences and debates, publication and release of books, organising talks by eminent littérateurs and also by holding the annual Kannada Sahitya Sammelana.
In the recent past, it seems that the Parishat has lost focus on its goals due to various reasons including lack of funds and political interference. There were also reports of irregularities conducted within the Parishat in the year 1987, which prompted the Karnataka Government to nominate an Administrator to the Parishat. The office of the Administrator was removed in the year 1989.
- The origin of Kannada Sahitya Parishat is mentioned by S. Siddesh Kurki. "Kannada Sahitya Parishat, the way it has covered". Online Webpage of That'skannada.com. Greynium Information Technologies Pvt. Ltd. Archived from the original on 2007-09-30. Retrieved 2007-04-29.
- Proposal to construct a new building to house the Parishat is mentioned by "Kannada Sahitya Parishat to get new building". Online webpage of That'skannada.com. Greynium Information Technologies Pvt. Ltd. Retrieved 2007-04-29.
- Unhealthy trends in the Parishat are mentioned by "No jingoism, please". Online Edition of the Deccan Herald, dated 2004-11-03. 2004, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd. Archived from the original on 2006-11-25. Retrieved 2007-04-29.