A polymeric chelating ligand containing hydroxamic acid and amidoxime functional groups were prepared from acrylate polymer grafted acacia cellulose and this ligand was introduced to remove heavy metals from industrial wastewaters. The heavy metals binding property with this ligand is excellent up to 3.78 mmol/ g sorbent and the rate of exchange of some metals was very fast i.e. t½ ≈ 6 min (average). Two types of wastewater from electroplating plants used in this study those containing chromium, zinc, nickel, copper and iron etc. Before removing heavy metals from wastewater, pH was adjusted to 4 and various metal concentrations were used for finding the extraction capability of the ligand. It was found that the metals recovery was highly efficient, up to 99.99% of several heavy metals were removed from electroplating wastewater using the ligands. Therefore, the proposed polymeric chelating ligands could be used to the remove such heavy metals from industrial wastewater and as well as effective ligands for environment protection.