Rajkot fire accident: 'TRP Game Zone never applied for NOC, cops didn't seek view on booking permit'

City's Fire and Emergency Services was never consulted by the police before issuing a "booking license" to the recreation facility in 2023 and renewing it in January this year.
The fire at the TRP game zone in the Nana-Mava locality of Rajkot on Saturday evening killed 28 persons, including children.
The fire at the TRP game zone in the Nana-Mava locality of Rajkot on Saturday evening killed 28 persons, including children.(Photo | ANI)

RAJKOT: The management of the TRP Game Zone had never applied for the mandatory fire NOC (No Objection Certificate), Rajkot city chief fire officer IV Kher said on Monday, countering the claim made by city police commissioner Raju Bhargava after the massive blaze killed 27 persons.

Kher also said the Rajkot city's Fire and Emergency Services was never consulted by the city police before issuing a "booking license" to the recreation facility in 2023 and renewing it in January this year.

Notably, the Gujarat government on Monday transferred Bhargava, Additional Commissioner of Police Vidhi Choudhary and Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone-2) Sudhirkumar Desai, and Rajkot Municipal Commissioner Anand Patel, two days after the fire tragedy.

While addressing a press conference on May 26, Bhargava said the local police in November 2023 granted a booking license to the gaming zone, which was again renewed for the period from January 1 to December 31, 2024.

"The game zone had received permission from the roads and buildings department. The management had also submitted documents which showed that it had installed fire safety equipment. Though the process to acquire a fire NOC was initiated by the management, it was not yet completed," he had said.

Kher said the owners of the game zone never approached his department to get a fire NOC.

"TRP management never applied for a fire NOC. No application has ever come to us from them, so no application is pending. When I reached the spot after the fire broke out, I noticed that installation of the fire system was going on but no one had ever applied for an NOC," Kher told reporters when asked if any application was pending as claimed by Bhargava.

He also clarified that city police never sought the fire department's opinion before issuing or renewing a booking license.

"Usually, the police inform us before issuing such licenses. But, neither the police had sought our view nor we gave our opinion in this case. Moreover, no person from TRP Game Zone had approached us for an NOC", said Kher.

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