Published:  12:20 PM, 01 February 2021

Bangladeshi-American Shamsul Haque became first South Asian to be Lieut. Commander in NYPD

Bangladeshi-American Shamsul Haque became first South Asian to be Lieut. Commander in NYPD

Lieutenant Shamsul Haque will make history by becoming the first South Asianto be Lieutenant Commander Detective Squad in the NYPD.  The promotional ceremony will take place onFriday, January 29, 2021 in NYPD’s Police Academy in Queens, New York.

LieutenantHaque joined the NYPD in January 2004 when only a handful of Bangladeshi wereemployed as police officers in America. After working on the Upper East side as a police officer, he waspromoted to the rank of Sergeant in 2010 and was assigned to a precinct in theSouth Bronx.  He was promoted to the rankof Lieutenant in 2014 and joined the NYPD's elite Internal Affairs ForceInvestigation Group where he has been working since then.

Hemakes history by being the 1st Lieutenant Commander Detective Squad of SouthAsian heritage. Lieutenant Haque said “although I may be the 1st one, I hope tosee a lot more of Bangladeshi Americans to rise up the rank within lawenforcement.”

His remarkable journey began when he droppedout of middle school in Bangladesh and moved to the United States in 1991.  Upon arrival, he worked several odd jobsincluding being a bus-boy, deli man and manager.   Seeing no prosperous future- determined tochange his life- he studied on his own and received High School EquivalencyDiploma in 1997.  Subsequently, hereceived AAS from LaGuardia College and BBA from Baruch College. 

While studying at Baruch College, he served asthe Chairperson of University Student and CUNY Trustee.  In these capacities, he vehemently foughtagainst CUNY tuition hikes on behalf of more than 300,000 students. 

Then, Lieutenant Haque continued to pursue highereducation.  He graduated from ColumbiaUniversity, one of the most prestigious universities in the world, with aMaster in Public Administration.  

When terrorists attacked New York City onSeptember 11, 2001, Lieutenant Haque felt it was an attack on humanity.  He said, “I am a proud Muslim and BangladeshiAmerican. There are more than a billion peace loving Muslims in the world. Afew terrorists, who claimed to be Muslims, can’t represent the entire Muslimpopulations in the world.” Lieutenant Haque wanted to change the perception ofMuslims in America and that’s why he joined the police department. 

As he continued to work in the NYPD, herealised the need for Bangladeshi Americans to join law enforcement in greaternumbers.  He called upon several otherBangladeshi American officers and co-founded a fraternal organisation namedBangladeshi American Police Association (NYPD BAPA), where he eventually servedas the president.  The organisation hashelped recruit hundreds of Bangladeshis to the NYPD.  Currently, there are about 400 policeofficers, detectives, sergeants, 3 lieutenants and 3 captains. In addition,there are more than 1000 traffic agents employed by the NYPD.

Upon learning the news of his promotion,Captain Karam Chowdhury, the current president of BAPA, congratulatedLieutenant Haque.

He said, “it is atestament that hard work and dedication pays dividends.” Lieutenant Haque isnot the only member of his family to serve in the NYPD.  His younger brother, Badrul Haque, is apolice officer in the Anti-Terrorism Task Force within the NYPD’s transitsystem.

Lieutenant Haque was born in a small villagein Bagha, Golapganj, Sylhet. His father’s is (late) Abdul Musabbir and mother (late) Nurun Nessa. Two of hisbrothers (Abdul Haque and Nazrul Haque were senior teachers in Abdul Ahad HighSchool and Narafig High Schools respectively. Lieutenant Haque lives with his wife, Rubina Haque, and two boys inQueens, New York.  All of his brothersand sisters reside in New York State. 

Contact: Shamsul Haque, Mobile #+1347-668-8269, Email:

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