On November 30, when Kochi Metro Rail Limited (KMRL) announced on social media about a contest to name their mascot (elephant), little did they would have imagined about the big trouble it will land them in.
As part of the contest, social media users were asked to comment their entry on the Facebook post of Kochi Metro before 6 pm on December 4. It was said that KMRL officials would shortlist three names with the most number of likes from which they would finalise the name and the winner.
The admin of the Facebook page had also strictly asked netizens to come up with some cool names other than Appu, Thoppy and Kuttan as they won't match the status of the mascot. And yes, Keralites proved how talented they are in picking unique names.
Though some suggested the names like Metrana, Meewa, Gajarani, Jumbo, Jimbruttan and Sri, among others, it was netizen Lijo Varghese's suggestion "KUMMANAANA" that impressed the majority. At the time of reporting, the comment has been "liked" by over 20,000 users.
However, after many users "liked" the name Kummanaana, the admin of the page added a new note to the post requesting the netizens not to suggest names that defame someone.
"Note: Contest entries defaming any personality or insinuating against any person is not encouraged & will not be considered for the selection [sic]."
Therefore, it is clear that Kochi Metro will not call its mascot the most liked named Kummanaana as it insinuates BJP leader Kummanam Rajashekharan from Kerala. Though many have tried to justify Kummanam to be a place name, the authorities are highly unlikely to use it.
Meanwhile, another name suggested by Facebook users is Kannanthaana clearly mocking Union Minister Alphons Kannanthanam.
Nevertheless, even if KMRL authorities finalise another name for the mascot, a majority of the people in Kerala will call it Kummanana only.
But why Kummanaana?
When Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched Kochi Metro, what caught the attention of social media users was the free ride of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) state president Kummanam Rajashekaran on it along with Vice-President Venkaiah Naidu, Kerala Governor P Sathasivam and Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, though his name was not on the list of dignitaries released earlier.
Soon, netizens started celebrating Kummanam's first ride in Metro with the hashtag #Kummnanamidapettu (Kummanam intervened). So, people just though Kummanaana would be the apt name for the Kochi Metro mascot!
Here is the viral Facebook post of Kochi metro: