Three persons died and several were injured in a stampede at a public meeting of Telugu Desam Party President N Chandrababu Naidu, in Andhra Pradesh’s Guntur city on Sunday, reported The Indian Express.

This is the second stampede in four days at a meeting by Naidu that has resulted in deaths. On December 28, eight persons had died in a stampede at an event in Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh.

On Sunday, the stampede occurred after Naidu had left the venue, reported NDTV citing an unidentified police officer. The Telugu Desam Party had organised a programme to distribute saris among women as gifts from the party president ahead of Sankranti, the harvest festival celebrated on January 14, reported the news channel.

“Some 4,000 women had gathered to get the Chandrababu Sankranti Kanuka,” the police official told NDTV. “Barricades had been erected, so queues could be maintained. On the other side, dinner packets were being distributed. Suddenly a barricade gave way and the stampede happened.”

The former Andhra Pradesh chief minister said the incident was extremely unfortunate and announced compensation of Rs 5 lakh for the families of those who died.

The ruling Yuvajana Shramika Rythu Congress Party alleged that Naidu and Telugu Desam Party leaders are responsible for the deaths.

“To show that large numbers of people are attending their meetings, Naidu and TDP leaders are holding public meetings in narrow lanes and streets where the traffic is getting blocked,” state Health Minister Vidadala Rajini told The Indian Express. “It is leading to stampedes and Chandrababu Naidu is responsible for the fatalities.”

Meanwhile, Telugu Desam Party leader Dhulipalla Narendra Kumar has alleged that the state government is not doing enough to provide relief to the families of the victims, reported ANI.

“TDP is deeply saddened by the [stampede] incident and will support bereaved families,” Kumar told the news agency. “We condemn the callous attitude of chief minister and his ministers who instead of providing medical and financial aid to affected families are putting allegations on TDP and our leader Chandrababu Naidu.”

The politican also alleged that police and administration failed to take appropriate measures to ensure safety at the public meeting.

“It was the government’s responsibility to take proper measures as prior permission was taken for the programme,” Kumar told ANI. “What wrong has Chandrababu Naidu done? He only came in support of the poor.”