You got your figures wrong, Mamata to PC

The West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee has contested the union home minister P Chidambaram's statement about a spurt in inter-party clashes in the state, saying his information was 'incorrect'.

'From where did you get such information? Such information is incorrect,' she said in a letter written to Chidambaram on Friday, claiming that incidents of political clashes had gone down considerably under the present dispensation and the state was now peaceful.

Banerjee said that the information provided by Chidambaram on law and order in the state was incorrect, and that the actual figures would speak differently.

Providing statistics, Banerjee, who holds the home department portfolio in the state, said that in 2011, which included five months under the Left Front rule, 62 people were killed in political clashes. Of these 62 victims, 35 belonged to the Trinamool Congress and 27 to other political parties, the letter, according to Trinamool Congress Rajya Sabha member Kunal Ghosh, said.

Banerjee said that in 2012 so far, only five persons were killed in political clashes in the state. Of these, four belonged to the Trinamool Congress.

Chidambaram had said on Thursday that 82 people were killed and 1,112 injured in the inter-party clashes in the last six months in the state, which was a matter of concern.

The panchayat minister and senior Trinamool Congress leader Subrata Mukherjee earlier described Chidamabaram's statement as a 'threat and conspiracy' against the state government prior to the presidential election.

However, Chidambaram's party disagreed with his comments. In an apparent conciliatory signal to Banerjee ahead of presidential poll, the Congress chose to ignore Chidambaram's criticism. 'I am not aware of any such statement and under what context the said statement was made by the home minister.... This all happens in politics,' the party spokesperson Renuka Chowdhury said in Delhi. She was asked whether the Congress agreed with Chidambaram's statement that there had been increase in the political violence after Banerjee took over as the chief minister of the state.
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