Following Rahul Gandhi's visit, Gujarat CM meets families of Rajkot fire victims month after the incident

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had on July 6 visited the bereaved families of the victims of Rajkot TRP Game Zone fire that claimed the lives of 27 people including children. Gandhi, after meeting with the families pledged to voice their concerns in Parliament.
Gujarat CM Bhupendra Patel.
Gujarat CM Bhupendra Patel.

AHMEDABAD: The political landscape surrounding the Rajkot TRP Game Zone fire tragedy has intensified. Following the Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's visit, the families of the victims who died in the fire were on Wednesday called for a meeting with the Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel in Gandhinagar.

Following their meeting, the disappointed families declared that if they do not receive justice within six months, they will organize a foot march across Gujarat.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had on July 6 visited the bereaved families and pledged to voice their concerns in the Parliament.

Following this and the discussions surrounding Gandhi's visit, Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel decided to meet the families on Wednesday, for the first time, one and a half months after the incident.

The meeting lasted for approximately one and a half hours, during which the Chief Minister listened to the families' grievances and offered his condolences. Chief Minister Patel assured the families that all responsible parties would be held accountable and that no one culpable would escape.

Gujarat CM Bhupendra Patel.
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Gujarat Government Spokesperson and Minister Rishikesh Patel told the media, "The chief minister and home minister have met with the families of the Rajkot TRP Game Zone fire victims and assured them that no responsible party will be spared."

However one of the family members pointed out that while the chief minister and home minister claimed to stand by them, the government refused to provide a written guarantee when requested.

The victims' families have  submitted a memorandum of 12 demands before the government.

"The chief minister and the government claim that they support us, but it would be better if they agree to meet our demands. After a month and a half of this tragedy, we were called in to be told they are with us. We feel this is just a reassurance tactic. We have informed the government that we will wait six months for justice. If they fail, we will stage a foot march from Rajkot to the chief minister's residence in Gandhinagar," one of the family members told media after the meeting.

The family members said that the government action against some officials responsible for the fire is not enough as they have been suspended and not dismissed.

Meanwhile, the meeting that happened immediately after Rahul Gandhi's visit has raised speculations regarding the intent of the government. The move is been seen by many as a preemptive measure to prevent the issue from being politicized, considering that this is the first time the chief minister is meeting with the victims.

After the meeting with Rahul Gandhi, Santoshben Kathad, who lost her younger sister Asha Kathad to the fire had said, "We invited Rahul Gandhi to join our planned protest because we have no faith in the investigation. Gandhi assured me that he will stand by us until we get justice and promised to raise this issue in Parliament."

A massive fire erupted at the game zone in Rajkot, Gujarat, on May 25, resulting in the loss of 27 lives including that of four children.

Gujarat CM Bhupendra Patel.
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