Punjab Government has launched country’s first amphibious bus project at the Harike wetland near Amritsar.
The amphibious bus named as “Harike Cruise” travels on land and as well as in water. It was launched by Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal.
- The first of its kind amphibious bus in India was imported from Swedish automobile company Scania.
- It will be run by the Punjab Tourism department. The project has cost the state government over Rs 11 crore.
- It has a seating capacity of 34 people and is equipped with life-jackets for everyone.
- The route of bus includes a 13 km ride from Amritsar to Harike wetlands. It will then traverse 4km on water. It covers the distance in 45 minutes.
About Harike wetland
Harike Wetland (also known as Hari-ke-Pattan) is largest wetland in northern India. It borders of Tarn Taran Sahib and Ferozepur district of Punjab. The wetland and the Harike lake were formed by constructing the headworks (dams) across the confluence of the Beas and Sutlej rivers in 1953. It supports rich biodiversity which plays a vital role in maintaining the precious hydrological balance in the catchment area. It was designated Ramsar Wetlands of International Importance in March 1990. It has provides ecological support to migratory fauna and number of globally threatened species such as Indus dolphins and Gharials.