The book is around 18,000 words and the initiative was led by Vishwanath Badikana, Assistant Professor, Kannada, St Aloysius College and Academy Fellow. The dictionary is titled ‘Arebhashe Padakosha-Arebase Kannada-English Dictionary’.
Vishwanath Badikana said, “The dictionary has been edited online. It contains more than 1,300 proverbs and 300 riddles, and for each word there is a sentence, to explain the usage. Also, there are more than 300 idioms. Each word also has an International Phonetic Alphabet in Roman script and has Kannada and English meanings. Similar words used in Tulu and Kannada have also been included. The draft dictionary was submitted to several experts and former Vice Chancellor of University of Kannada BA Vivek Rai, former Vice Chancellor of Karnataka Folklore University K Chinappa Gowda and former Professor of JNU Purushothama Bilimale have written letters of appreciation for the dictionary, which have also been included. The book will contain messages from the Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, Minister of Kannada and Culture Sunil Kumar and other prominent Ministers, MPs and MPs hailing from the region. The foreword is by Kodi Kushalappa Gowda, a retired professor from the University of Madras.
Badikana said a team of eight research assistants helped compile the dictionary words between December 2019 and February 2020. Academy member Bharathesha Alasandemajalu provided overall technical support. It wasn’t until the book was nearing completion that the team got together and put in 190 hours of work over 12 days, he said. Lakshminarayan Kajegadde, president of the academy, said they tried to include every detail in the dictionary. Kodi Kushalappa Gowda and Che Ramaswamy, retired professors from the University of Madras, and Sukumar Gowda, a retired teacher from Puttur, participated in the work. “We are also working on putting the dictionary online. The release was scheduled at three locations including Madikeri, Mangaluru and Bengaluru. Unlike ordinary dictionaries, a cover page was designed for the book, keeping in mind the culture of the community that speaks the language,” he said.