India celebrates September 5 every year as Teacher's Day because of its second President, Dr S Radhakrishnan, who was a reputed scholar and philosopher. Having spent his whole life in academic institutions, occupying such posts as the King George V Chair of Mental and Moral Science at the University of Calcutta, the Spalding Professor of Eastern Religion at Oxford and the Vice Chancellorship at Andhra University, Radhakrishnan became renowned as one of those most dedicated to the cause of education.

In 1962, when he took the office of President, some students approached him to allow them to celebrate his birthday every year. To which, he replied, “instead of celebrating my birthday separately, it would be my proud privilege if September 5 is observed as Teachers’s Day."

But in addition to his renown as a teacher, Radhakrishnan was also an accomplished statesman. London'sDaily Telegraph insisted "no King or head of state could approach the intellectual distinction of Dr S Radhakrishnan." The former President was influential in shaping our understanding of Hinduism, and also helped build bridges between India and the West, and even in his presidential role continued to bring in an ethical element to the way the country dealt with the rest of the world. In this audio recording, a rare opportunity to hear Radhakrishnan's own voice, the former President speaks of the "pervese fastidiousness" that makes nations look upon themselves as a closed entity.