Who was Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan

Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan (September 5, 1888 to April 17, 1975) was independent India’s first Vice President, and second President. He was the recipient of several distinguished awards, including the Bharat Ratna (India’s highest civilian award), honorary membership of the British Royal Order of Merit and knighthood. Dr. Radhakrishnan was one of the most influential thinkers of modern India, and he stressed on the need for the “best minds in the country” to become teachers, so as to groom the upcoming generations. He was himself regarded by many in politics as a wise mentor, who put the country’s above his own at all times. It is said that, after Dr. Radhakrishnan became the President of India, a group of students wanted to celebrate his birthday as Radhakrishnan Jayanti. He gently refused and instead suggested that they think of a way to honour their teachers. What followed was that his birthday was marked as ‘Teachers’ Day’ in India, and has been celebrated as such since 1962.

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