Lauding the arrangements by the BJP government in Uttar Pradesh for this year’s Kumbh Mela, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday recalled the 1954 stampede at the religious gathering in Allahabad when Jawaharlal Nehru was PM.

“When Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru was prime minister, thousands of people were killed in the Kumbh stampede in Allahabad,” Modi said at an election meeting in Kaushambi.

The prime minister claimed that for saving the image of the then government, the media, too, had suppressed the news.

“The stampede victims’ families names were never mentioned and not a single rupee was given to them (as compensation)… It was insensitivity and this sin was committed by the country’s first prime minister,” Modi said.

Lashing out at the SP-BSP-RLD ‘gathbandhan (alliance)’ in Uttar Pradesh, he said during the last elections, the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party were on opposite sides of the fence, but they have joined hands this time.

“Last elections the SP and the BSP were political foes, today they have become friends,” he said ridiculing the alliance.

During the 2014 Lok Sabha and 2017 Uttar Pradesh assembly elections, the SP and the BSP had contested against each other.

Modi said names of prospective prime ministers are popping up from every “gali-mohalla (nook and corner)”.

“Parties contesting on 20-40 Lok Sabha seats also want to make a prime minister,” he said.