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Rajkot gaming zone fire: Six, including owner and manager, booked for culpable homicide

Rajkot (Gujarat): A day after a fire at the TRP Gaming Zone in Rajkot killed 27 people, including children, Gujarat Police have booked six people, including its owner and the manager, for culpable homicide not amounting to murder, officials said on Sunday.

According to officials, an FIR has been filed against six people, including TRP Game Zone owner Yuvraj Hari Singh Solanki, manager Nitin Jain, and others at Rajkot Taluka Police Station.

Both the owner and the manager of the gaming zone have been arrested and will be produced in court tomorrow.

"A case under IPC sections 304 (for culpable homicide not amounting to murder), 308 (for attempt to commit culpable homicide), 337 (for causing hurt by an act endangering life or personal safety of others), 338 (for causing grievous hurt by an act endangering life or personal safety of others), and 114 (for abettor present when the offense is committed) has been registered against six people, out of which two are in custody," Rajkot Police Commissioner Raju Bhargava said in a press conference on Sunday.

"We are working with the FSL team to collect all the scientific evidence in the case. Our effort is to complete the investigation as soon as possible and file a charge sheet in the case," he said.

The Rajkot Police Commissioner further said that a nine-member SIT has been formed to investigate the case, and special police teams are working to arrest other accused.

Regarding the cause of the incident, he said that some fabrication work was taking place in the game zone and inflammable materials were kept there.

"According to the preliminary investigation, some fabrication work was happening there. There were many inflammable materials, and the fire occurred possibly because of welding activity," the police commissioner said.

Till Sunday morning, 28 people were confirmed dead, and several others were injured.

"Around 27 bodies have been recovered, and remains of another have also been found. So we think the death toll will be around 28," he said.

As per officials, a total of 27 DNA samples were sent. Since blood samples of some bodies couldn't be taken, samples of bone marrow were collected. The results are expected within 48 hours.

"Till Saturday night, police recovered 27 bodies, which were shifted to Civil Hospital. Their DNA samples were also collected and sent to FSL to confirm the identity of the deceased persons. The process of matching them is still going on," he added.

The Commissioner further said that a proposal has been sent to the Home Department to appoint a special PP (Public Prosecutor), and also the SIT team formed by the Gujarat government will give their report, and after that, we will take further action.

"It is being investigated whether the establishment had obtained any NOC from the fire safety department or not," the police commissioner added.

Earlier in the day, Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel, along with Home Minister Harsh Sanghavi, inspected the Rajkot TRP gaming zone on Sunday. The duo also met the injured at Rajkot's Giriraj Hospital.

Gujarat Home Minister Harsh Sanghvi took stock of the area where the massive fire broke out and assured that the state government is making adequate deployment there.

Following the incident, all the gaming zones in Vadodara were inspected and temporarily shut down, Chief Fire Officer Parth Brahmbhatt told ANI.

"After yesterday's fire incident in Rajkot, all 8-9 game zones in Vadodara were inspected. Those gaming zones that seemed unsafe were asked to take requisite steps to ensure their safety. All game zones in Vadodara were safe earlier and now further safety has been ensured," he said.

"The game zones will be closed till further orders come," Brahmbhatt added. 

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