Gwalior: An exhibition on the life and achievements of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee has been put up at the venue of the party's three-day state executive meet which began on Wednesday.

Though the 88-year-old leader's frail health has restricted him from attending the meet at his birthplace in Gwalior, his presence has been ensured by way of the exhibition titled 'Atal Bihari Vajapyeeji ke Vyaktitva ki Chitramay Pradarshini'.

The leader's birth place 'Krishna Kripa' in the city is now converted into a library in the memory of his parents Krishna Devi and Krishna Bihari Vajpayee.

"The exhibition has a collection of Atalji's rare photographs collected by 'Atal Samagra', to showcase the achievements of the poet-turned-politician for inspiring younger generation," BJP investor cell's co-convenor, Shailendra Sharma said.

It also showcases Vajapayee's political journey from Jansangh to taking oath as Foreign Minister and then as the Prime Minister -- first for a short stint of 13 days, 13 months and later for the full five-year-term. The exhibition also displays photographs of Vajpayee addressing in his trademark style which remained his forte till he was restricted because of poor health.

On display are also his photographs with former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, Pakistan's ex-President General Zia-ul-Haq, former US President Bill Clinton and at the Pokhran nuclear test site. There are also photographs of Vajpayee's bus diplomacy and peace initiatives during Nawaz Sharif's government in Pakistan.

Going through the exhibition, Madhya Pradesh Medical Education Minister Anoop Mishra, who is the nephew of Vajpayee, turned nostalgic when he identified his mother in a rare family photograph.

Though BJP's senior leader and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi's image was conspicuously missing from the posters and banners that dotted the city, the exhibition showcased at least two of Modi's photographs with Vajpayee, one in Lucknow and the other playing Holi with him.

BJP's national vice president and former MP Chief Minister Uma Bharti, who has not been invited by the party to attend the state executive meeting, has found a place in the exhibition which displays her 2003 victory in Madhya Pradesh, ousting Congress government led by then Chief Minister Digvijay Singh.

The exhibition also showcases Vajpayee's photograph with late Rajmata Vijayaraje Scindia, whose family ruled Gwalior for ages. The exhibition also puts up portraits of Jansangh-BJP's formative years under the leadership of its founders, Pandit Deendayal Upadhyaya and Dr Shyama Prasad Mukherjee.

Senior party leaders, including BJP President Rajnath Singh, senior leader LK Advani, Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj, and her counterpart in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley, state Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, among others, are taking part in the meet. The meeting is crucial for the saffron party in view of the Assembly elections scheduled in Madhya Pradesh by year-end.


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