After the launch of Reliance’s Jio telecom network’s 4G services on September 5, which promised customers the moon and had other telecom operators seeing doom, a bitter war that had broken out between RJio on one side and other telecos on the other, has taken an interesting turn.
Tata group Chairman Emeritus Ratan Tata’s official Twitter handle, on Friday at 7 pm, responded to a satirical tweet alluding to a nexus between Reliance and the union government by tagging Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on it.
The twitter handle, @RealHistoryPic, tweeted a picture of Reliance Chairman Mukesh Ambani and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, with the caption “Owner of Network 18 welcoming his employee to address people how cronies are going to halt inflation,” a few days ago, after full front page advertisements of Reliance Jio in leading newspapers in Delhi featured Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Only two days ago, the war of words between existing telecom providers and Reliance Jio had escalated with the Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) writing a letter to the Prime Minister’s Office seeking the PM’s intervention to restore fair competition.
RJio, which is trying to disrupt the market by providing voice calls through data, has sent other telecos into tizzy with its announcement, as it would affect their bottomlines. In its latest letter, COAI referred to the free voice calls by RJio as a “free lunch” and said the telecom service provider was seeking to pass an overwhelming burden on to rival operators through tariff manipulations
Ratan Tata must surely be incensed at the seeming government approval of a rival company, but whether he would use a tweet to express his thoughts is arguable. Either way, as quickly as these controversial tweets appear, they disappear too, and this one did too — but not soon enough, as screenshots of the said tweet became easily available and retweeted by other Twitter users, setting tongues wagging.
Rumours are that Ratan Tata’s handle may have been hacked, or an overenthusiastic social media manager of the Ratan Tata account might have inadvertently replied instead of sending a direct message to Kejriwal, or that the underling may have tweeted from the official handle of Tata, when he/she in fact meant to tweet from his/her own handle.
What’s your take on what happened?