Rajkot Gamezone Fire: Gujarat Government Orders Statewide Closure Of Gaming Zones

Rajkot Gamezone Fire: Gujarat Government Orders Statewide Closure Of Gaming Zones

The government has directed district police chiefs to close all gaming zones operating within their jurisdictions and to conduct thorough inspections of fire safety measures.

Melvyn ThomasUpdated: Sunday, May 26, 2024, 10:15 AM IST
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Rescue and relief work underway after a fire broke out in a gaming zone, in Rajkot, Saturday, May 25, 2024. | PTI

Gujarat: In the wake of the tragic fire at the Rajkot TRP Gamezone, the Gujarat government has swiftly taken action. Following instructions from Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel, Minister of State for Home Harsh Sanghavi immediately traveled to Rajkot to review the situation on the ground. This decisive move underscores the government's commitment to addressing the incident and preventing similar tragedies in the future.

The fire at the TRP Gamezone has so far claimed 33 lives, most of whom were children. The incident has raised serious concerns about fire safety regulations and compliance across similar venues in the state. In response, the government has directed district police chiefs to close all gaming zones operating within their jurisdictions and to conduct thorough inspections of fire safety measures.

An investigation into the Rajkot TRP Gamezone has revealed significant lapses in safety protocols. It was discovered that the game zone did not possess the necessary fire No Objection Certificate (NOC) or adequate fire safety equipment. The TRP Gamezone was housed in a shed-like structure that did not require formal construction approval, allowing it to bypass certain regulatory requirements. Consequently, it was only recorded as a plot in the municipal register, not as a fully operational entertainment venue.

Chief Fire Officer I.V. Kher confirmed that the game zone had not obtained a fire NOC, a critical document that certifies compliance with fire safety regulations. This oversight points to a severe neglect of responsibility on the part of the managers, who reportedly avoided securing the NOC to save money. This cost-cutting measure had fatal consequences, as the lack of proper fire safety measures contributed to the rapid spread of the blaze.

Minister Sanghavi's visit included a detailed review of the site and consultations with local authorities to ensure a comprehensive understanding of the incident's causes. The government has emphasized the need for stringent enforcement of fire safety regulations and has pledged to hold those responsible for the lapses accountable.

In addition to closing existing gaming zones, the government has ordered immediate inspections to verify the presence and functionality of fire safety equipment across these venues. This initiative aims to ensure that all gaming zones comply with safety standards and possess the necessary NOCs to operate legally.

The tragedy at the Rajkot TRP Gamezone has brought to light the critical importance of fire safety compliance and the dire consequences of neglecting these regulations. As the government moves to tighten safety protocols and enforce compliance, the focus remains on preventing such incidents in the future and safeguarding the lives of citizens.

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