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‘Baraat in Delhi and LK Advani the Groom’: When Atal Bihari Vajpayee Declined This Wedding Invitation

When Additional Advocate General of the Rajasthan High Court Shyam Sundar Ladrecha invited Atal Bihari Vajpyee to his wedding in 1991, the future PM responded in a style typical of him.

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Updated:August 17, 2018, 1:56 PM IST
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‘Baraat in Delhi and LK Advani the Groom’: When Atal Bihari Vajpayee Declined This Wedding Invitation
File photo of Atal Bihari Vajpayee and LK Advani. (Reuters)
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New Delhi: The nation is plunged in mourning following the death of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and everyone who had an association with him is dealing with the loss by remembering the moments shared with the statesman.

Shyam Sundar Ladrecha, Additional Advocate General of the Rajasthan High Court, recalled an early incident from 1991 in which he saw Vajpayee's iron resolve. That was the year Ladrecha got married. To invite the future Prime Minister and then MP Vajpayee, Ladrecha sent his invitation in a letter.

Vajpayee, known for his quick wit, responded in a fashion typical of him. "Here, too, there is a baraat (wedding procession) that has to leave. Advani ji is the groom and he has to be wedded to the government in Delhi," Vajpayee wrote in his letter.

vajpayee-letter
The letter written by AB Vajpayee to Shyam Sundar Ladrecha.

After the fall of the Chandrashekhar government, the country was preparing for mid-term elections in the summer of 1991. Advani, riding the rath from Somnath to Samastipur, had become the rallying point and the face of the Ram Temple movement.

The BJP's Lok Sabha tally in 1989 rose to 84 from a mere two seats in 1984. In 1991 mid-term polls, the party won more than 120 seats to emerge as the main opposition and Advani became the Leader of Opposition. While the BJP fell short in 1991, Vajpayee finally fulfilled his dream of forming a BJP government at the Centre in 1996.

Ladrecha said Vajpayee's death has left him with a sense of personal loss. Since his early days in the RSS, Ladrecha had been in touch with Vajpayee.
| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai
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