The New Canadians

Rafiq Latif, handcuffed and his eyes glistening with tears, stood at the front door of his parents’ townhouse with Police Sergeant Robert Jennings. He turned to his mother, Ruksana, and muttered in muted anger, “Ammi, I did nothing wrong.”

Ruksana couldn’t control her sobbing as her daughter, Ziram, tried to calm her. Rafiq’s father, Abdul, was distraught, too, although he managed to hold his composure.

“Beta, there is still time, tell the police everything you know,” Abdul urged, as his son-in-law Jameel held him by his shoulders.

Rafiq glared at him.

Together with their friends Kartar Garewal and his wife, Harminder, the Latif family were waiting outside for the police officers—inspectors Ravindar Singh and Howard Roff—to conclude their search of the house. It was early fall, the street was getting darker and the porch lights were on. The new bungalow was on a dimly lit, secluded stretch of Brandon Gate Drive, just off Goreway Road in Malton. The only traffic was people heading home from work. Most of the two-dozen families who lived in the recently developed neighbourhood barely knew each other.

Published in TOK: Writing the New Toronto, Book 5. Purchase the book to read the full piece.