Karela – Hindi word for bitter gourd – was trending on Twitter when many users from Kerala thought their state name was being misspelt as usual.

Karela the fruit and red map of Kerala state
news Social Media Sunday, June 28, 2020 - 17:44

When ‘karela’ - Hindi word for bitter gourd - began trending on Twitter, it is not just those who love the fruit who made the hashtag posts. Malayalis, who read it as Kerala, their home state, too, started trending the hashtag on Sunday. 

'Karela' became the 27th trending item on Twitter on Sunday morning when some shared recipes and some said how karela is their favourite dish.

Quite often, outsiders tend to misspell the name of the state as Karela, so Malayalis are used to reading Karela as Kerala. Here are some of the funny tweets that popped up.

"#karela is trending but I don't know why I read it Kerala," wrote a user who goes by the handle of NitinV69 and promptly posted a picture of Karela, the fruit, and Kerala, the state with a map. Both have identical shapes, someone else wrote.

 

 

"Just nature 3D printing Kerala's map. If you look costly, you can see Western ghats. #Karela and  #Kerala are related," tweeted Adil M, posting a picture of hanging gourds.

Mathew Thankachan was another user who got confused. "Who all saw the word #karela trending and in the first look thought #kerala ne ab kya kar diya??? (What did Kerala do now?) Karela Rocks. Kerala Rocks."

 

 

Yet another user, going by the handle jibston, thought it was someone 'spewing venom against Kerala' misspelling it as some do.

A user named Anurag struggled to see the difference. "I realised I'm wrong only when I saw photos of  #karela again and again. Real struggle," he wrote, adding a confused emoticon.

 

 

Another user, Tapiocazm, thought some were trying to trend Kerala and misspelt it in the process when he saw 'Karela' trending. 

People in Kerala often take offence when the name of their home state is misspelt, just like they do when Malayali is shortened to Mallu or everyone in South India is collectively called a Madrasi. But this time it seems, there was no mistake – karela was meant to be karela.  

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