Even as a local court directed the police to file charges against Trinamool leader Anubrata Mondal for inciting violence, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said that an unnecessary hue and cry was being made over the matter.

Making this comment on Saturday at the West Bengal Legislative Assembly, Ms. Banerjee said: “Mr. Mondal did not want to make these remarks... He has stated this in a letter to me.”

In an obvious reference to action taken against party leaders Sambhu Kow and Arabul Islam who were jailed, Ms. Banerjee said: “It is well known that I do not spare anyone... I send them to jail when necessary.”

This is the first time that Ms. Banerjee has commented on the matter, since July 17 when Mr. Mondal courted controversy by stating at an election rally in Birbhum district that the house of Independent candidates should be burnt and bombs should be hurled at police.

Ms. Banerjee’s comments expectedly did not go down well with the Opposition who said this was tantamount to extending tacit support to Mr. Mondal. Leaders belonging to the Communist Party of India (Marxist), the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party said that they were appalled but not surprised.