Bangladeshi Father in Queens ‘Fears the Worst’

Riaz Talukder came to the United States in the 1980s, when he was still a teenager, and qualified for the late amnesty program for green cards in 1990, he said. He later filed for asylum after receiving death threats from the Jamaat Islami Party, a fundamentalist party, while visiting Bangladesh. (Photo by Katie Honan via City Limits)

[Update: Riaz Talukder has been granted a six-month stay, reports Queens Tribune.]

Ahead of his check-in with ICE on Nov. 20, Riaz Talukder, a 50-year-old Bangaldeshi immigrant, met with family, friends, and other supporters “to talk about what they can do to keep him in Queens,” writes Katie Honan in City Limits. At a check-in one month earlier, ICE agents “told him to return with a passport and a plane ticket back to Bangladesh.” The Jamaica resident, who is the only provider for his family, now “fears the worst.”

“No criminal history, works hard, pays taxes, two kids, wife with cancer,” his lawyer Edward Cuccia said. “It’s a pretty overwhelming thing.”

He’s now leaning on a network of grassroots organizations and neighbors to do anything to extend his stay of deportation order so he can continue to work out how to become a citizen.

Talukder came to the U.S. in the 1980s as a teenager. His immigration story involves, according to Talukder, filing for asylum after receiving death threats from a fundamentalist party in Bangladesh, a lawyer who “messed up his paperwork” and a deportation order he was unaware of until 11 years after it was issued – when ICE showed up on his doorstep and his son Rafi, then 8, answered.

Hear from Rafi, and find out what the family has endured in the years since the initial visit, as well as more on the support Talukder has received from Queens organizations and residents, in the full story at City Limits.

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