First seen these Amphibious bus in Bus World 2015, Mumbai built by ACGL, Goa now found its water in Punjab. Punjab Tourism Development Corporation will be operating the bus, as Punjab has tremendous network of rivers, canals and inland waterways. These waterways have great potential in harnessing the tourist footfall. In order to achieve this objective, Government of Punjab has introduced water-based tourism through amphibious bus at Harike Wetlands. Such an activity will boost the tourism trade and will also help to generate revenue and employment for the state.
The amphibious vehicle has been built by Advance Amphibious Design in the USA, Amphibious Design India and Automotive Corporation of Goa .
To make the project operational, a ramp has been constructed at left marginal bund of Harike wetland. For the ease of tourists who come from Amritsar, a tourist reception centre has been set up at the railway station, which will also provide transfer facilities to the boarding point at Harike. The total duration of the tour, including transfers, is around 3 hrs 45 mins and can seat upto 32 passengers
However, the operations will have been halted for the next 15-20 days as water level in the reservoir has receded to 3.5 feet due to the raising of the main gates of Rajasthan Feeder Canal and Ferozepur Feeder Canal for repairs. The minimum water level required for operating the service is six feet.
The tour offers tourists a unique experience in the wetlands of Harike where they can enjoy the flora and fauna. A large species of birds and Indus dolphin are found at the confluence of Satluj and Beas. It will be a real feast for the bird lovers. The local populace, where tourists will visit restaurants and hotels for night stay, will also benefit. This will again generate more revenue,” Lal said, while adding, “If the project is successful and the revenue generation is good, then in the next six months, two more buses will be procured.” The price of the bus is not disclosed however its said each bus is priced around 45lks.