At least 27 people killed in a fire at an amusement park in western India, police say

NEW DELHI (AP) — A major fire broke out Saturday at an amusement park in Gujarat state in western India, killing at least 27 people, including several children, police and media reports said.

The fire erupted at the park in the city of Rajkot in Gujarat state. Police Commissioner Raju Bhargava said that the blaze was under control and a rescue operation was underway.

Police officer Vinayak Patel said that it was difficult to identify the bodies.

Police said they have detained the owner and the manager of the amusement park for questioning as they launched an investigation in the cause.

“So far we have confirmed the death of 27 persons in the fire incident,” the Press Trust of India news agency quoted Patel as saying, adding that the dead included four children under the age of 12.

The park is usually packed with families with children enjoying the school summer vacation over the weekend.

Footage showed firefighters clearing debris around collapsed tin roof structures that media reports said were used for bowling, go-carting, and trampoline attractions.

The amusement park was privately owned by Yuvraj Singh Solanki and Bhargava said that police would file a case of negligence against him.

“We will be registering an offense for negligence and the deaths which have occurred. Further investigation will take place once we complete the rescue operation,” he said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi wrote on X that he was “extremely distressed by the fire … in Rajkot. My thoughts are with all those who have lost their loved ones. Prayers for the injured.”

Fires are common in India, where builders and residents often flout building laws and safety codes.

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