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Last Updated : Aug 16, 2018 05:44 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Atal Bihari Vajpayee's life in pictures: A poet, a visionary and an inspiring leader

The eminent leader and poet will be remembered for leading the government that put India on the world map as a nuclear power, among other achievements.

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Eminent statesman and co-founder of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Atal Bihari Vajpayee died on August 16, 2018 after being in critical condition for over nine weeks. The former prime minister had been suffering from diabetes and dementia. Here's a look at the poet, the politician, and the visionary's life in pictures. (Pictured - Vajpayee along with former US President Bill Clinton at Rashtrapati Bhavan in 2000 with the then president KR Narayanan. (Image: Reuters)
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Eminent statesman and co-founder of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Atal Bihari Vajpayee died on August 16, 2018 after being in critical condition for over nine weeks. The former prime minister had been suffering from diabetes and dementia. Here's a look at the poet, the politician, and the visionary's life in pictures. (Pictured - Vajpayee along with former US President Bill Clinton at Rashtrapati Bhavan in 2000 with the then president KR Narayanan. (Image: Reuters)

Atal Bihari Vajpayee was born on December 25, 1924, into a middle-class family in Gwalior to Krishna Bihari Vajpayee- a school teacher and poet and Krishna Devi. He graduated from Victoria College with distinction in Hindi, English, and Sanskrit and earned his M.A. in Political science from DAV College, Kanpur. (Pictured - Vajpayee along with former Cambodian prime minister Hun Sen in 2002 during an official three-day visit to Cambodia. (Image: Reuters)
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Atal Bihari Vajpayee was born on December 25, 1924, into a middle-class family in Gwalior to Krishna Bihari Vajpayee- a school teacher and poet and Krishna Devi. He graduated from Victoria College with distinction in Hindi, English, and Sanskrit and earned his M.A. in Political science from DAV College, Kanpur. (Pictured - Vajpayee along with former Cambodian prime minister Hun Sen in 2002 during an official three-day visit to Cambodia. (Image: Reuters)

His involvement in politics began as a freedom-fighter during the Quit India Movement in 1942-1945. He and his elder brother Prem were remanded for 23 days during that time and were released after submitting a written undertaking, stating that they would not participate in the anti-British struggle, a promise that the brothers kept. (Pictured - Vajpayee along with then Shiv Sena leader Bal Thackeray at an election campaign rally in Mumbai, 2004. Image: Reuters)
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His involvement in politics began as a freedom-fighter during the Quit India Movement in 1942-1945. He and his elder brother Prem were remanded for 23 days during that time and were released after submitting a written undertaking, stating that they would not participate in the anti-British struggle, a promise that the brothers kept. (Pictured - Vajpayee along with then Shiv Sena leader Bal Thackeray at an election campaign rally in Mumbai, 2004. Image: Reuters)

Inspired by Babasaheb Apte, Vajpayee joined the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and eventually became a full-time worker for the Hindu nationalist organisation after giving up studies in law. He later joined erstwhile Bharatiya Jana Sangh (BJS) and was elected to the Lok Sabha for the first time from Balrampur (UP) in 1957. (Pictured - Vajpayee addressing a news conference in Shantiniketan in 2004. He was the university's chancellor, at the time. Image: Reuters)
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Inspired by Babasaheb Apte, Vajpayee joined the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and eventually became a full-time worker for the Hindu nationalist organisation after giving up studies in law. He later joined erstwhile Bharatiya Jana Sangh (BJS) and was elected to the Lok Sabha for the first time from Balrampur (UP) in 1957. (Pictured - Vajpayee addressing a news conference in Shantiniketan in 2004. He was the university's chancellor, at the time. Image: Reuters)

As his influence grew within the party due to his excellent oratory skills, Vajpayee became the Minister of External Affairs in Prime Minister Morarji Desai’s government. He later played a quintessential role in the formation of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and became the first party president in 1980. (Pictured - Vajpayee along with Lal Krishan Advani in 1997. Image: Reuters)
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As his influence grew within the party due to his excellent oratory skills, Vajpayee became the Minister of External Affairs in Prime Minister Morarji Desai’s government. He later played a quintessential role in the formation of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and became the first party president in 1980. (Pictured - Vajpayee along with Lal Krishan Advani in 1997. Image: Reuters)

Vajpayee continued to lead the BJP through a string of defeats for more than a decade before finally winning the 1996 general elections to become India’s 10th Prime Minister. After being unable to secure a coalition majority, Vajpayee resigned after 13 days. (Pictured - Vajpayee is seen here speaking to the press at New Delhi's Presidential palace, after submitting his resignation in 1996. (Image: Reuters)
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Vajpayee continued to lead the BJP through a string of defeats for more than a decade before finally winning the 1996 general elections to become India’s 10th Prime Minister. After being unable to secure a coalition majority, Vajpayee resigned after 13 days. (Pictured - Vajpayee is seen here speaking to the press at New Delhi's Presidential palace, after submitting his resignation in 1996. (Image: Reuters)

Vajpayee managed to lead a stable government in 1999 after the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) won the general elections. He is the first and currently the only non-Congress prime minister to have successfully completed a full term in office. (Pictured - He is seen here inspecting the guard of honour on his arrival in Moscow in 2003. Image: Reuters)
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Vajpayee managed to lead a stable government in 1999 after the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) won the general elections. He is the first and currently the only non-Congress prime minister to have successfully completed a full term in office. (Pictured - He is seen here inspecting the guard of honour on his arrival in Moscow in 2003. Image: Reuters)

Under the Vajpayee government, India conducted its second round of nuclear tests in 1998 at Pokhran, heralding its arrival on the international front as a nuclear power. (Pictured - He is seen here inspecting a gift in Beijing in 2003. Image: Reuters)
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Under the Vajpayee government, India conducted its second round of nuclear tests in 1998 at Pokhran, heralding its arrival on the international front as a nuclear power. (Pictured - He is seen here inspecting a gift in Beijing in 2003. Image: Reuters)

The Vajpayee government was successful in recapturing Kargil from militants and non-uniformed Pakistani soldiers in harsh weather conditions and heavy artillery firing in 1999. “Operation Vijay” was successful in fending off invasions from thousands of enemies. The moment was celebrated as “Kargil Vijay Diwas” in 2012. (Pictured -  Vajpayee is seen talking to reporters at the Indian Presidential palace in New Delhi in 1996. Image: Reuters)
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The Vajpayee government was successful in recapturing Kargil from militants and non-uniformed Pakistani soldiers in harsh weather conditions and heavy artillery firing in 1999. “Operation Vijay” was successful in fending off invasions from thousands of enemies. The moment was celebrated as “Kargil Vijay Diwas” in 2012. (Pictured - Vajpayee is seen talking to reporters at the Indian Presidential palace in New Delhi in 1996. Image: Reuters)

The Vajpayee government was known for carrying out a full-scale diplomatic peace process with Pakistan through late 1998 and early 1999. This was kick-started with the inauguration of the Delhi-Lahore bus service in February 1999. (Pictured - He is seen here being greeted by a Chinese girl and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao during a welcoming ceremony in 2003. Image: Reuters)
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The Vajpayee government was known for carrying out a full-scale diplomatic peace process with Pakistan through late 1998 and early 1999. This was kick-started with the inauguration of the Delhi-Lahore bus service in February 1999. (Pictured - He is seen here being greeted by a Chinese girl and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao during a welcoming ceremony in 2003. Image: Reuters)

A celebrated orator and poet, Vajpayee once said, “My poetry is a declaration of war, not an exordium to defeat. It is not the defeated soldier's drumbeat of despair, but the fighting warrior's will to win. It is not the despirited voice of dejection but the stirring shout of victory.” (Pictured - Vajpayee is seen here at the afternoon session of the 114-nation Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit in Kuala Lumpur of 2003. Image: Reuters)
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A celebrated orator and poet, Vajpayee once said, “My poetry is a declaration of war, not an exordium to defeat. It is not the defeated soldier's drumbeat of despair, but the fighting warrior's will to win. It is not the despirited voice of dejection but the stirring shout of victory.” (Pictured - Vajpayee is seen here at the afternoon session of the 114-nation Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit in Kuala Lumpur of 2003. Image: Reuters)

Vajpayee retired from public life after the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) lost the 2004 Lok Sabha elections. His health deteriorated over the years, leaving him confined to his residence. (Pictured - He is seen here with US president George W. Bush at the White House in 2001. Image: Reuters)
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Vajpayee retired from public life after the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) lost the 2004 Lok Sabha elections. His health deteriorated over the years, leaving him confined to his residence. (Pictured - He is seen here with US president George W. Bush at the White House in 2001. Image: Reuters)

Vajpayee, who never married, has an adopted daughter Namita Bhattacharya. (Pictured - Vajpayee is seen here giving a campaign speech in Calcutta in 1999. Image: Reuters)
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Vajpayee, who never married, has an adopted daughter Namita Bhattacharya. (Pictured - Vajpayee is seen here giving a campaign speech in Calcutta in 1999. Image: Reuters)

Vajpayee received the Bharat Ratna — the country's highest civilian honour — in 2015. (Pictured) He is seen here with Russian President Vladimir Putin at a ceremony in Kremlin, Moscow, in 2003. (Image: Reuters)
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Vajpayee received the Bharat Ratna — the country's highest civilian honour — in 2015. (Pictured) He is seen here with Russian President Vladimir Putin at a ceremony in Kremlin, Moscow, in 2003. (Image: Reuters)

The Centre in 2014 declared December 25, Vajpayee’s birthday, as ‘Good Governance Day’. (Pictured) Greeted by a supporter after receiving a garland wreath at his residence prior to taking the oath of office to become Indian Prime Minister May 16. (Image: Reuters)
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The Centre in 2014 declared December 25, Vajpayee’s birthday, as ‘Good Governance Day’. (Pictured) Greeted by a supporter after receiving a garland wreath at his residence prior to taking the oath of office to become Indian Prime Minister May 16. (Image: Reuters)

First Published on Aug 16, 2018 05:44 pm
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