It all started with some memes in which people asked India's popular cab service provider Ola to start boat service in Chennai as the city is under water due to incessant rains.
On Tuesday afternoon, all of a sudden, the hashtag #OlaBoats was trending on the micro-blogging site Twitter as many social media users started posting photos of "Ola staff" (wearing company jackets) rescuing stranded people on boats (with Ola sticker) in many parts of the city.
The company also responded on Twitter after Ola boats became a trending topic by saying "Rain or shine, we're always available for you".
"Ola deployed boats in waterlogged and partially submerged areas on the basis of information from the Fire and Rescue department", Ola's business head (Tamil Nadu), Ravi Teja reportedly said in a statement. It is understood that ferry service will be available for more days if water-logging continues.
However, when IBTimes India contacted Ola Chennai office twice, the staff expressed ignorance about the company's "new ferry service", at the time of reporting.
Meanwhile, the timely gesture by the company by collecting boats from Chennai Sport Fishing Company and presing them into service has been lauded by many netizens.
— OLA (@Olacabs) November 17, 2015
Check out social media responses below:
#OlaBoat By plying boats to ferry the affected people,Ola has not stolen the hearts of chennaiites. Keep your good work going #Chennairains
Awesome work @Ola.. Really great service during desperate times #Kudos #Olaboat #Chennaifloods
Kudos to #OlaBoat! Gonna make for an incredible marketing case study!
Amazing @Olacabs for changing jokes to a needful reality #OlaBoat.. Kudos to you guys
#OLA is doing an excellent service on rescuing & evacuating d people from drowned areas using boat. #Velachery #Mudichur. Hats off @Olacabs