Finally, amphibious bus cruises on Harike Lake
The amphibious bus project worth Rs 10 crore was inaugurated by Sukhbir Singh Badal in December 2016. Since then, the project has drawn flak from time to time, especially on social media platforms.punjab Updated: Jun 01, 2017 13:13 IST
After facing a lot of hurdles, the amphibious bus finally started in the Harike Lake on Wednesday morning.
Rampant weed menace in the lake —a confluence of Satluj and Beas river— had erupted fresh trouble for the dream project of former deputy CM Sukhbir Singh Badal a few days ago. The weed had occupied the route identified to make the bus run in the lake.
On Tuesday, operators of the bus faced another technical problem regarding the route, but they managed to solve it on Wednesday morning and the bus finally floated in water giving ride to 15 tourists.
Two square kms area has been fixed to operate the bus, but on the first day, it ran on only one square km. However, the tourists were given double ride on the same route.
Sanjay Aggarwal, managing director of Krishna Tour Company, that has been given contract of the project by Punjab tourism department under public private partnership (PPP), said all hurdles have been reduced and the bus would be running daily if things remained favourable.
As of now, Rs 20 per person is being charged for the complete package of tour called ‘Duck Tour’. In this package, the tourists will be ferried from Amritsar to Harike Pattan along with refreshment on the way. The tourists will also be facilitated to visit bird sanctuary. For this, a special website has been created for tourists’ convenience.
The amphibious bus project worth Rs 10 crore was inaugurated by Sukhbir Singh Badal in December 2016. Since then, the project has drawn flak from time to time, especially on social media platforms.
First, its inauguration was postponed as the water level in the lake was not sufficient. The issue could not be fully resolved.
After a short ride for the former deputy chief minister on the day of inauguration, the bus was locked away.
The first bus also was sent back to Goa in February and replaced with a new ‘better-looking’ bus as promised by Sukhbir.