Arunanand TA, hailing from Kochi in Kerala, was tweeting about high fares charged by autorickshaws in Yeracaud in Tamil Nadu, unaware that the Salem police in the state did not have a Twitter handle.
The complaint was followed by a series of tweets from either side of the globe that also revealed that a city by name Madras (Chennai’s erstwhile name) was located in another part of Oregon state, whose capital is Salem. “@SalemPoliceDept are you aware that the autorickshaws overcharge tourists in #Yercaud? Rs 50 for 1.5 km. Is there a system that looks into such issues here? @CMO TamilNadu @VisitYercaud,” he tweeted.
He also wanted a response from the Salem city police located near Yercaud, which is about 370 km from here.
However, he unknowingly tagged the official twitter handle of Salem Police Department at Oregon in the US. The US police promptly responded to his tweet, saying, “We are the Salem Police in Salem, Oregon, USA.”
Responding, Arunanand admitted his mistake, saying he unknowingly tagged them. “I knew US had a Salem whilst Tamil Nadu State in India also has one. Never thought I would wrongly tag you folks. Thanks for the reply, nevertheless! Good Day,” he tweeted. In another tweet, Arunanand asked them whether there was a city named Madras in Oregon.
“Do you guys have a Madras too in Oregon? That’s the name of the capital of Tamil Nadu State!,” he tweeted for which the Salem Police tweeted saying, “Yes, we do. It’s in another part of the State. However, and not too close to #SalemOR”. Chennai was formerly known as Madras.
Before concluding, the Salem police department said, “We know @ twitter account has been beneficial to our community for engagement and understanding. Best regards from our community to yours.”