Sokkiah Ashok’s eyes speak of hope.
The kind of hope one embodies to make ends meet—however difficult—in a foreign land for seven years.
Home for Ashok is a shared dormitory unit at the corner of Veerasamy Road while he works as a driver for a company based in Tuas.
Just as the Indian national was about to have dinner with a few friends, he remembers the strong smell of smoke that night.
“We all heard loud yells and people shouting.”
Crossing over from the intersection of Kerbau Street and Race Course Road, he sensed that this was no ordinary Sunday night.
His hands nimbly cheroot a brochure with a quiet uneasiness as he speaks about that fateful night.
“Even though it’s been a week, I still feel very emotional about what has happened,” the 28-year-old said. “I don’t know what will happen tomorrow or if I will be able to work here for long.”
Rumors of fellow friends being removed from work and having to return home penniless has unsettled him.
“I feel like crying because there is nothing else I can do.”