Standing outside an Indian-run jewelry store with silver baubles arrayed in the window, Kafil, who voted Leave, recounted how his grandfather was the first member of his family to move to Birmingham in 1964. When Kafil arrived here, he struggled to master English while working at an Indian restaurant, eventually becoming the chef.
“We have lived here a long time, and we learned the British culture,” Kafil said.
In his grandfather’s time, South Asian immigrants often were taunted with, “Go home, Paki!” Kafil was only slightly less derisive when he described the families from Romania, Bulgaria and other Eastern European countries that have moved into his apartment building in the last five years.
“They don’t know the law,” Kafil said, his wife nodding in agreement. “They are shouting at all hours. They park their cars all over the place. They are drinking and smoking. They beg on the streets and pick things out of the dustbins. It is a shame for Britain.”