Atal Bihari Vajpayee, born in Gwalior on Christmas Day 1924, had a sweet connect with the city. The laddoos from Gwalior's famous Bahadura Sweets came to be known as the 'Passport to PM', not without reason.
Vikas Sharma, the 47-year-old owner of the shop, says whenever the former prime minister came visiting, he would go for the laddoo.
"He was a friend of my father, used to spend a lot of time here. We used to make only a few sweets, like laddoo and gulab jamun... Those close to him would take sweets from here. My father said he was like family," said Mr Sharma.
Mr Vajpayee was born to Krishna Devi and Krishna Bihari Vajpayee in Gwalior's Shinde ki Chawani area.
He studied till Class 8 in Gorakhi middle school, where his father served as principal in 1935-37.
He completed his graduation from victoria College - now MLB college - in Gwalior and then moved to Kanpur for a higher degree.
The building is old and crumbling, but the school has somehow managed to preserve the register with Vajpayee's name in his handwriting.
"This is a historic document for us. At number 101 is Atal Bihari Vajpayee's name. He wrote it down when he was admitted in Class 6 in 1935," said KS Rathore, the school principal.
"The identity of this school is Atal-ji, we only want that it should be named after him."
In his school years, Mr Vajpayee played kabbadi and hockey. He also liked to ride his bicycle around town. Once Rajmata Vijayraje Scindia -- a royal-turned-politician -- offered him a car but he politely refused, saying Gwalior was his own city.
In the 1984 national election, Mr Vajpayee lost in Gwalior by a huge margin to young Madhav Rao Scindia of the Congress. The loss upset him deeply.
Shivraj Singh Chouhan, the chief minister of Madhya Pradesh, said after that defeat, when he visited Bhopal, Mr Vajpayee said to him: "Shivraj, I am now unemployed too".
He never fought from Gwalior again. In 1991, he contested the election from Vidisha and Lucknow.
"Atal ji won both the seats but he decided to retain Lucknow and made me contest the by-election from Vidisha. When I went to meet him after winning the by-election, he said 'aao Vidisha-pati (come, Vidisha's leader)' and since then, whenever I met him, he always addressed me by that name," Mr Chouhan shared.
After 2006, Mr Vajpayee never visited Gwalior because of his health but the people of this fort city will always carry fond memories of the iconic politician.
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