Professor from India about Bishkek: I rest away from the hustle and bustle here

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Dr. Kashif Hasan Khan is from India. He is a Director of Silk Road Research Center and a Professor of Finance at the Economics Department of Ala-Too International University in Bishkek.

Kashif Hasan Khan came to Kyrgyzstan in July 2018. He was invited by Ala-Too International University to join the Department of Economics as a senior lecturer.

— What surprises you in Bishkek/ Kyrgyzstan?

— When I came first time in Bishkek, I found it extremely beautiful, surrounded by mountains with a very few people on the streets. Back in India we are used to see many people around. But I always prefer to be in the places, which I find very peaceful, away from hustle and bustle of people. So, I was extremely happy that I found a place, where I would be spending my next few years.

Kyrgyzstan offers some unique experiences which one can’t find in the West or any other part of the East such as staying in a yurt. Kyrgyzstan is undoubtedly one of the most alive nomadic cultures and the Kyrgyz people are proud of their nomad ancestors. Kyrgyzstan has an incredible culture inherited from its nomads.

— What in Bishkek reminds you of your hometown?

— Mountains and busy city center! I come from a state called Uttarakhand in northern India crossed by the Himalayas.

Most of the people in Bishkek can be found in the city center and same way back in my city in India, where people generally go to a few spots and enjoy their time.

— What do you miss in Bishkek/Kyrgyzstan?

— Bishkek offers almost everything one needs to live a good life.

However, there is one thing that I personally miss. It is a book store with English books! I am an avid reader.

Kashif Hasan Khan

I love reading and writing. I write on Central Asia and fiction. I have published my first novel «The Accidental Preacher» and presently working on my second novel on Central Asia.

I like visiting book stores, read for hours and buy. Back home I have my own library, but, unfortunately, I lack this in Bishkek.

— What is your favorite place in Bishkek?

— Cafes! I am not a very social person. I go to cafes, grab latte and sit in a corner and enjoy either reading or writing. There are beautiful cafes in Bishkek, where you can relax and enjoy your time and people (generally college goers).

— What national dishes do you like?

— I love Kyrgyz food. I am a health-conscious person. I avoid very spicy food and hence Kyrgyz food being non spicy is the best choice for me. Lagman is my favorite.

I have explored all restaurants in Bishkek and I know perfectly which one is the best for what food!

Kashif Hasan Khan

— What are you afraid even to taste?

— Horse meat! I had tasted once only and honestly speaking I didn’t like. Whenever I am dining in a restaurant or café, I double check that there is no horse meat.

— What has fascinated you in close acquaintance with the local population?

— Kyrgyz are generally kind people. In my last five years, I have never encountered any bad thing. There are few ups and downs but that is everywhere; it has nothing to do with a particular country or community. There are good people and bad people everywhere.

Fortunately, I am with people who are very good. My colleagues at the university and the house owner, are the ones with whom I have most of my daily affairs in Kyrgyzstan and, fortunately, they are very good people. I find them extremely kind and helpful. I don’t feel I am not in my own country. I feel that I am very much in my home country.

— What disappointed you?

— Personally nothing! However, I have heard that some people hate foreigners and medical students from India, Pakistan and other countries. They must be happy that these foreigners and students bring a lot of economic opportunities to Kyrgyzstan.

This flow of money will definitely make Kyrgyzstan more vibrant economy.

Kashif Hasan Khan

Sometime Indian students share their stories how they are abused and treated badly by their neighbors, house owners and local people in public places! I feel bad!

Source: News Agency