Punjab News Tourism police set for makeover


Prime VIP
Amritsar, June 28

For thousands of tourists, the city is all set to be the most friendly destination in Punjab as the Amritsar Tourism Police (ATP) is going to get more teeth after the completion of its ongoing makeover process.

Keeping in view the security of Indian and foreign tourists who visit the city in large numbers daily, the ATP was set up about two years ago. With 30 police officials, the ATP had been assigned the task of lending a helping hand to tourists in their problems pertaining to transport, accommodation and information. However, its performance was rated to be far from satisfactory.

“The ATP is going through a makeover. It will not only be strengthened in respect of numbers but will also get a more tourist-friendly face.” Now, the tourist police will assist tourists not only at the Golden Temple and other prominent religious places but also at all other important points like the bus stand, the railway station, Raja Sansi airport and the Attari border. The assistance will be offered by specially trained officials in association with NGOs and other social organisations in such a manner that tourists will feel at home, said Amritsar Police Commissioner Varinder Kumar. He said while the ACP had been appointed the nodal head, he would have overall supervision.

“Officials at all points will be armed with a list of emergency numbers of services like that of the PCR, crime stoppers, ambulance, government hospitals, emergency doctors, authorised taxi stands, guest houses, hotels, restaurants, sarais, dharmashalas, the information office at the Golden Temple, the inquiry offices at the railway station, bus stand, airport, Punjab Tourism office, etc. These points would also have first-aid kits. ATP officials at these places had been asked to furnish details pertaining to their change of duty, lost and found articles, complaints received and sorted out and information or medical aid given to tourists.

The ATP staff would guide tourists about locations, distance and available transport to various tourist places and help them procure tickets for museums and cinema houses and in finding accommodation. It would also guide tourists in matters relating to passports, visas, residential permits, exchange of currency, immigration and local customs.

Special instructions had been issued to the police stations to maintain a separate register pertaining to problems reported by tourists.“ The ATP officials have been specially directed to keep tabs on overcharging by taxi operators and those running guest houses,” said Varinder Kumar.