Former cricketer S Sreesanth's father-in-law Hirendra Singh Shekhawat today dismissed rumours that his closeness with senior Sangh leader Indresh Kumar helped the ex-pacer get BJP ticket to contest Kerala Assembly polls.
He, however, revealed that the BJP leadership in the southern State has been in touch with Sreesanth since last two years.
"I know Indreshji but he didn't help my son-in-law to get BJP ticket," said Shekhawat responding to a query whether his proximity with the RSS leader helped Sreesanth get BJP ticket.
BJP picked up Sreesanth apparently as the party needed a popular face to contest the seat.
The saffron party, which is trying hard to make a foray in the southern State, last week announced Sreesanth's candidature from Thiruvananthapuram seat.
BCCI had slapped life bans on Sreesanth and spinner Ankeet Chavan for allegedly being involved in the IPL spot-fixing scam in 2013.
However, Sreesanth's name was cleared by a court in a match-fixing case.
Shekhawat, Director of Madhya Pradesh Tourism Development Board, however, has played a key role in Sreesanth joining the saffron party.
"I had introduced Sreesanth to former Kerala BJP president V Muraleedharan two years ago. It so happened that one day I met Muraleedharan in Kerala and he talked to me about my son-in-law and evinced keen interest in him," Shekhawat told PTI.
He said Sreesanth then had frequent meetings with Murleedharan and other BJP leaders following which he joined the saffron party.
Shekhawat, whose father Guman Singh had worked as a RSS pracharak, said that Sreesanth's father Santhakumaran was a communist leader while his cousin Dr TN Seema is CPI(M) MP in Rajya Sabha from Kerala.