Contradicting his party colleague Sushma Swaraj, BJP president Rajnath Singh today suggested that Jaswant Singh was denied ticket from Barmer after the Central Election Committee discussed the issue and that the step was taken due to certain "political compulsions".
Rajnath Singh said Jaswant Singh could not be nominated despite "everyone" wanting and all senior party leaders, including himself, were also "pained" by this decision.
He said "extraordinary decisions are taken in extraordinary situations" but refused to elaborate.
"Even while desiring from the depth of our hearts, it was not possible for us to give ticket to Jaswant Singhji from Barmer," Rajnath Singh told Times Now.
He acknowledged that Jaswant Singh had told him about his desire to contest from Barmer and that he had told him that he will discuss the issue with the Rajasthan unit of BJP.
"I talked to everyone. Everyone respects him. But there were certain political compulsions because of which the ticket could not be given to him," Rajnath Singh said.
When referred to Swaraj's statement that the issue of nomination from Barmer was not decided by CEC, the BJP chief refused to go into specifics, merely saying, "Rajasthan issue was discussed in the CEC... All seats of Rajasthan were discussed in CEC."
Soon after Jaswant Singh was denied ticket on Saturday last, Swaraj had said that "There must be some reason because this as that ticket was not decided by the (BJP) Central Election Committee."