According to the New Zealand Herald, Samad was originally from the Kurigam district of Bangladesh, where he was a lecturer in Bangladesh’s Agricultural Development Corporation. After retiring from a his career as an educator in 2012, he moved to New Zealand with his wife and two children to start a new phase of his family’s life.
Ironically, it was a “homecoming” of sorts for Samad. He worked in Christchurch as a visiting professor at Lincoln University, where he had obtained his Ph.D decades earlier in the 1980s, after obtaining citizenship. He was 66 years old when he lost his life in the attack on Al Noor mosque.
He was one of two Bangladeshi citizens who died in the Christchurch attacks. According to his brother, as reported by Al-Jazeera, he was a “very pious person,” and was a prayer leader at the local mosques. He appeared by all accounts to be a standout leader in the community.
A friend and colleague, Professor Mohammad Abdul Wahab, heaped praise on Samad. He recounted to BBC Bengali: “When I came to know about the attacks in the Christchurch mosques, I just thought of him. He was a very pious man, he used to conduct prayers often.”
“I thought about whether he was OK or not. I talked to my family members about him. On that day, my nephew showed me the TV news and my fears came true,” he added.
Like so many others, Samad was a fine, upstanding member of his community. Samad is survived by his wife and two children. A devout man in life and a highly-educated individual, he embodied the truth that religious faith and scientific knowledge go together and complement each other. As such, his memory will serve as a fitting role model for future generations.