Prafulla Chandra Ray (1861 - 1942) was an eminent Bengali chemist, academician and entrepreneur.
A pioneer of chemical research, he joined the Presidency College as a lecturer in chemistry in 1889 and in his spare time did commendable research work on Ayurveda. In 1920, he was elected President of Indian Science Congress.
He was a great reformer of Bengal. He realized that advancement of India and its people could happen only by economic advancement through development of new industries. He showed the way by investing his own money into forming Bengal Chemical and Pharmaceutical Works, India's first pharmaceutical company in 1892, which grew phenomenally under his guidance.
An ardent social worker, he advocated the use of khadi and started many cottage industries. He made several donations to schools, colleges and even to the Calcutta University.
Acharya Prafulla Chandra Ray's ultimate aim was to make use of the wonders of science for the benefit of masses. He was awarded with the Hope Prize, Fellowship of the Chemical Society, U.K and several Doctorates and honorary degrees from foreign universities. He was awarded with Knighthood in 1917.
The Bengal Chamber is honoured to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of this great Indian.