Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) General Secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya on Tuesday said party’s former Presidents Murli Manohar Joshi and Lal Krishna Advani themselves refused contest the Lok Sabha polls this time.Also Read - LK Advani Turns 94: PM Modi, Home Minister Shah Call Him 'Living Inspiration' | Photos & Videos

“Advani Ji and Dr. Murli Manohar Joshi refused to contest the Lok Sabha polls. Similarly, I also refused to contest. If someone is unwilling (to contest) will the party give them tickets?” Vijayvargiya said after inspecting the preparations for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s public meeting at the Brigade Parade Ground here on April 3. Also Read - Viral Video: MP CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan Sings Popular Sholay Song 'Yeh Dosti Hum Nahi Todenge' With Kailash Vijayvargiya | Watch

When asked whether the two party veterans wrote any letter to the leadership expressing their unwillingness to contest the coming elections, Vijayvargiya said the message was conveyed to their organisational minister. Also Read - Bengal Election 2021: PM Modi, Mamata Banerjee Clash Against Each Other in Parallel Rallies in Bengal | Highlights

The BJP leader’s remark comes amid the controversy over Joshi’s claim in an open letter that the party asked him not to contest the 2019 polls.

Earlier, the BJP denied a ticket to Advani and replaced him with party President Amit Shah in the Gandhinagar Lok Sabha seat in Gujarat.

The two veteran leaders have also been kept out of the list of 40 leaders who will be campaigning for the first two phases of the Lok Sabha polls in Uttar Pradesh.