With business slumping, airlines brush off rivalry and business pranks on Twitter

MUMBAI: The coronavirus may have caused social estrangement, but on Friday morning, in an unusual side effect, it also brought together rival airlines from the Indian airline industry as they fought each other to stay safe.

He was taking care of his own business when, probably losing his temper due to the blockage, he threw down the gauntlet to the TATA-SIA airline with a cheep . Hello @airvistara, are we not #flyinghigher these days that we have heard? #Staying Park Staying Sage #LetsIndiGo. 'Fly Higher' is an extension of Vistara's motto 'Fly the new Feeling'.

Vistara responded, displaying 'limitless expanse' of forgiveness towards its rival with a cheep that played around IndiGo’s tagline. "No @IndiGo6E, these days being on-ground is a wonderful thing. Flying would not be the 'smart' choice, what say @goairlinesindia?"

The context? A few years ago, the Federation of Indian Airlines (FIA), an airline lobby group comprising IndiGo, had filed a lawsuit against licensing Vistara and AirAsia. However, they were unable to cut the wings of the two airlines. In recent years, Vistara has been trying to become a member of the FIA, but was twice rejected by existing members.

On Twitter though, for now, all are flying around as friends. GoAir responded to Vistara’s cheep with a "Staying home is the safe feeling!" and tagged AirAsia, which put out a red, hot, spicy response tagging SpiceJet, which went back to AirAsia with a "been a while since this bird flew out of her cage" and tagged Delhi airport, which chimed in with a "the Indian skies will be coloured with you soon but for now thanks for giving us a reason to smile!" (sic). The airline posts sent the twitterati into a tizzy, sending re cheep s and likes soaring to the skies.

But long before airlines could fly around on twitter posting witty responses it was probably the Mumbai police that set the trend rolling with an ode to Bollywood after actor Alia Bhatt cheep ed, expressing gratitude and love for the Mumbai police.

The police responded with a cheep worded around the names of films Bhatt had starred in. "Mumbaikars, we hope you all are 'Raazi' with this advise of Ms @aliaa08 to not venture out in any ‘Gully’ unnecessarily and take care of ‘Dear Zindagi’ for all!"

That was enough for the tweet, who drove him on with more puns on movie names, making it a riot that the police approved.