Karpal Kaur Sandhu
Died4 November 1973
Cause of deathmurdered
OccupationPolice officer
EmployerMetropolitan Police Service
Known forfirst female Asian police officer in Britain

Karpal Kaur Sandhu was the first female Asian police officer in Britain. She served in the Metropolitan Police Service from 1971 to 1973.


Sandhu was born in Zanzibar in 1943, before moving to Britain in 1962 and becoming a nurse at Chase Farm Hospital in Enfield.[1][2] She joined the Metropolitan Police Service aged 27 on 1 February 1971, serving first in Hornsey, then in Walthamstow and Leyton.[3] Her date of joining made her the first female Asian police officer in Britain.[2][4][5]

Sandhu died in the line of duty on 4 November 1973. Her husband did not agree with her becoming a police officer, and he had taken their two children to India. However, he returned to the UK and confronted her outside her house in Chelmsford Road, Walthamstow.[3] When her husband attacked her, she recalled herself to duty in order to arrest him, but he stabbed her in the neck. In March 1974 he was found guilty of her murder.[6]

See also


  1. ^ Neiyyar, Dil (1 February 2011). "Call to honour an Asian 'pioneer'". BBC News. Retrieved 5 October 2020.
  2. ^ a b "UK's first Asian female officer remembered by Met Police". BBC News. Retrieved 1 February 2021.
  3. ^ a b Hardy, Clare. "HISTORY: Met Police marks 40th anniversary of first female Asian officer". East London and West Essex Guardian Series. Retrieved 5 October 2020.
  4. ^ Llewellyn, Julia (2012). "Life as an ethnic minority police officer". ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 2017-11-05.
  5. ^ Arain, Saima Manzoor (2014-06-22). Women Police Unfurled in Pakistan: Perspective, Status and Prospective. Lulu.com. ISBN 9781312276246.
  6. ^ "Police Roll of Honour Trust". policememorial.org.uk. Retrieved 2017-11-05.