Celebrating Britain's 101 Most Influential Asians 2021

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Sir Akhlaq Choudhury 


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JUSTICE Akhlaq Ur-Rahman Choudhury created history in 2017, when he was appointed as a high court judge – making him the first BritishBangladeshi to be elevated to the post.

Capping the achievement, he was also appointed Knight Bachelor in Special Honours for members of judiciary in the same year.

Choudhury’s parents had migrated to the UK before the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971.

His late father, Azizur Rahman Choudhury, ran a restaurant business and was a community leader in Glasgow.

After graduating in Physics from University of Glasgow, Choudhury did his law degree at the University of London. He was called to the bar in 1992, and became a recorder in 2009.

Appointed as Queen’s Counsel in 2015, he proved his mettle as a deputy high court judge since 2016, before being named among five new high court judges in August 2017.

Initially assigned to the Queen’s Bench Division, the 53-year-old has been serving as the president of the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) since January 2019.

His order on the admissibility of discrimination claims against the UK visa regulator has been a landmark judgment.

He suggested that there are arguable grounds for a claim of racial discrimination against the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC) in the Employment Tribunal as a regulator. This has opened ways for individuals who are affected by decisions made by the OISC, not just employees, to take them to the tribunal.

In another notable judgment at the EAT, Page vs Lord Chancellor and Lord Chief Justice, he upheld the removal of a magistrate who had objected on religious grounds to children being adopted by same-sex couples and was ultimately removed from office ollowing a BBC interview about the matter, noting that the statements made during interview demonstrated a lack of impartiality.

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