Teachers’ Day in India: Teachers’ Day is celebrated across the country on September 5 every year to celebrate the birth of former president Dr Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, who was also an acclaimed scholar. The day is observed to celebrate the contributions made by teachers to society.
Dr Radhakrishnan was born on September 5, 1888, in a poor Telugu Brahmin family. He completed most of his education through scholarships. After earning his master’s degree in Philosophy, he went on to serve as vice-chancellor of Andhra University from 1931 to 1936 and the vice-chancellor of Banaras Hindu University (BHU) in 1939, succeeding Madan Mohan Malviya. He also wrote the book ‘The Philosophy of Rabindranath Tagore’ in 1917. Dr Radhakrishnan also served as a teacher at Chennai’s Presidency College and Calcutta University.
In recognition of his contributions in the field of teaching and society, he was honoured with India’s highest civilian award, the Bharat Ratna, in 1954. Subsequently, in 1963, he was admitted as an honorary member of the British Royal Order of Merit.
It may be noted that Dr Radhakrishnan was a celebrated teacher among students. It is said that while he was serving as India’s second president, he was approached by his students in 1962 to celebrate his birthday on September 5. Instead, Dr Radhakrishnan requested them to celebrate the day as Teachers’ Day to honour their contributions.
Despite all his contributions, Dr Radhakrishnan remained a teacher throughout his life. The day is celebrated not only to honour him but also to recognise the importance of teachers in building our country.
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On this day, the President honours the teachers chosen for their extraordinary contribution in the field of teachings with ‘National Teacher Awards. Students also get the opportunity to thank their teachers for their efforts in shaping their future.
While schools also organise several events to celebrate the day, many students also dress up like their favourite teachers to celebrate the day. They also honour their teachers with gifts and take their blessings.