No scope for controversy over Home Minister's letters to Bhattacharjee: Mukherjee

Kolkata, Jan 1 (ANI): Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Saturday said there is no scope for any controversy over the letters that were sent by Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram to West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee to take note of the prevailing law and order situation.

"The Union home minister has discharged his constitutional duty. Where is the controversy? The Union home minister has written a letter to the chief minister and he has given a reply to it," said Mukherjee.

"It is the responsibility of the chief minister too to respond to his queries. Where is the scope of controversy in it?" he wondered.

Earlier on Thursday, Union Home Minister invited Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee to discuss prevailing situation in his state.

Chidambaram sent two letters in reply to Bhattacharjee's letter. Both letters were faxed as well as sent by speed post.

In the concluding part of the first letter, the Home Minister invited West Bengal Chief Minister to Delhi, at his earliest convenience, to discuss the subject and agree upon the way forward.

Bhattacharjee had earlier written to the Home Minister, alleging that his assessment of the Bengal situation "was surprising and not impartial."

In his letter, Bhattacharjee also said that Railways Minister Mamata Banerjee and her Trinamool Congress (TMC), which was earlier maintaining secret contacts with Maoist leaders and outfits are now openly organising meetings with them.

Bhattacharjee was replying to a letter written by Chidambaram to him, in which he was sharply critical of law and order in the state.

In his reply, Bhattacharjee also stressed that he has asked all parties in West Bengal to work together to prevent political clashes. But Banerjee's TMC alone remains uncooperative, he said.

The Home Minister had virtually ordered Bhattacharjee to disarm and demobilise the armed cadres of his party and referred to them as "Harmad Vahini" - a derogatory term used by Banerjee"s party for the Left"s cadres. (ANI)

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