Massive fire at Rajkot amusement park leaves 35 dead


Rajkot, May 26 : At least 35 people, including 12 children, were reportedly killed in a massive fire at an amusement and theme park in Gujarat’s Rajkot city on Saturday. The fire broke out at ‘TRP’ – an amusement and theme park — when it was teeming with children, causing chaos and panic.

It is suspected that the fire might have started due to a short circuit. A Fire Department official said: “The reason for the fire has yet to be ascertained. The attempts to douse the fire are underway. We are facing difficulty in the firefighting operation because the temporary structure has collapsed and also due to the wind velocity.”

Rajkot District Collector Prabhav Joshi said: “The firefighters managed to control the fire, but fumes are still emanating from the debris, and we fear more people could be trapped beneath.” Sources said the owner of the amusement park has been arrested. The place was inundated with crowds because of the weekend. The intensity of the fire was so fierce that smoke was seen billowing from the shopping mall from a long distance. The state government has announced a compensation package of Rs 4 lakh each for the next of kin of the deceased and Rs 50,000 for every injured person. Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel expressed his condolences and assured swift action.

Rajkot TRP game zone fire: Investigations reveal management’s negligence

Meanwhile, investigations into the TRP game zone tragedy in Gujarat’s Rajkot that claimed 35 lives have revealed that the incident happened due to its management’s negligence. The investigations revealed that the TRP game zone had been operating illegally in a residential area for four years without the necessary No Objection Certificate (NOC).

The amusement park was set up in a flimsy shed-like structure to bypass regulatory approvals, the sources said. Despite this, the sources shared that the facility continued to attract visitors, oblivious to the lurking dangers. Rajkot Additional Collector Chetan Gandhi did not respond to the media, while Executive Engineer of the Mechanical Department C. C. Patel has disappeared and is not responding to calls. The Road and Building Department officials are also untraceable, and the officers responsible for issuing the stability certificate are missing. It was found that the game zone managers had expanded the facility to three stories by obtaining a ride certificate.

The sources added that they secured permission from the police for the amusement park and sought approval for rides from the mechanical branch, sidestepping comprehensive safety evaluations. Questions have been raised about the management and safety protocols at the Gamezone. Reports indicate that 2,000 litres of petrol were stored on-site, ongoing welding activities, and numerous tyres were kept, all without a proper fire No Objection Certificate (NOC). The state government and the Special Investigation Team (SIT) have pledged thorough investigations and justice for the victims. Subhash Trivedi, Chairman of the SIT, said, “This is a very tragic incident, and guilty will not be spared. Justice will be served to all,” he said. Trivedi assured that a proper investigation is underway and concrete actions will be taken against those responsible.