Students, who wanted to study Kyrgyz language at Jamia Millia Islamia this year, were in for a shock when they realised that the course they had applied for will not be conducted at all this year. The college, after inviting applications for the certificate course, put up a notice last week, telling students to opt for Uzbek language course instead. Applications for the course had already been filed.
"This is really weird. Why should I study Uzbek instead of Kyrgyz? I may go to Kyrgyzstan for a research project and wanted to learn the language. I have now lost that opportunity," said Muhammad Hanif, 24. College authorities say, the course was suspended as the two faculty members, who were Kyrgyz nationals, had to go back to their country due to personal reasons.
"We have written to the embassy to look for a teacher but it is going to be difficult at such a short notice," said Simi Malhotra, media coordinator, Jamia Millia Islamia. She says Uzbek was offered as an option as most of the students who apply for the course are doing research on Central Asia. "Six such students have already taken Uzbek," she said. But the course has not been cancelled permanently. "Though it is difficult for us to find a teacher this year, we are hoping to restart the course next year," she added.