The ancestral house of the late Square Group Chairman Samson H Chowdhury in Ataikula in Pabna.Photo: STAR
The departure of Samson H Chowdhury, chairman of Square Group, is the end of an era, said Md Kamrul Hassan Mintu, mayor of Pabna Municipality, expressing his condolence on the business icon's demise.
"We felt proud that Samson H Chowdhury was born in Pabna. His great journey in the business world started in this area. Thousands of people here now depend on his established businesses," the mayor added.
"It's a great loss."
Samson was born in Ataikula, Pabna, in 1926. He was inspired to help the poor by his father, Eakub H Chowdhury, who was a medical officer.
Eakub started providing free-treatment to people in the village from a charitable dispensary at the Ataikula residence in 1938. Samson learnt the lessons of humanity from Arnold Memorial Dispensary and went on to plan something bigger.
He established a medicine shop in the Ataikula market in the 50s and started producing liquid medicine. He initiated a company, E Sons, along with his family members.
Increasing demand for medicines inspired Samson to establish a small medicine factory with three of his friends in 1958. They named the company 'Square'.
The eldest son, Samson was a father figure to his younger family members.
“After the death of our parents, our elder brother led the family as a guardian," said Sotten Chowdhury, Eakub's second son.
Samson was earnestly devoted to reading to find ways of moving ahead.
"My brother wanted to read more and more. He had a firm devotion to developing his work," said Samar Chowdhury, Samson's youngest brother.
"He started with a medicine factory in our ancestral home, but his devotion to the profession brought him to today's leading position.”
"My elder brother was not only a businessman. He used to help the poor, like our father did,” Sotten said.
Following in his father's footsteps, Samson opened an orphanage in 1985 for poor Christian children at his ancestral residence in 1985, added Sotten.
"Sixty orphans and poor children are now staying there. The orphanage fulfils all the necessary requirements of the children, including shelter, food and education."
Samson also made donations to many institutions. His contribution turned Ataikula into a well-organised village, Sotten said.
He also contributed to the 1971 liberation war of Bangladesh by providing shelter to freedom fighters. His sons also took part in the war.