When you drive behind a truck, it’s good to be weary. They are pretty much like elephants on wheels that can rip through your car. When you’re over taking a truck on the highway in India, it is perhaps a good idea to blare out your horn.
While it makes sense to write ‘Horn Please’ behind the truck, ever wondered where that Ok came from?
The First Theory
The ‘Ok’ part came from Tata. Today you’ll find many trucks like Bharat Benz, AMW, Mahindra on the road. However, before India opened up its economy, most of the trucks were manufactured by Tata. It was around this time that Tata Oil Mills Ltd. Co (TOMCO) came up with a detergent new brand called OK. Hence, their marketing team thought of an ‘amazing idea’. They decided that trucks would be a superb way to spread awareness about this detergent brand called OK. Since the brand had a symbol of the Lotus, the Lotus was painted above OK.
This strategy carried on for a few years and eventually, truck drivers adopted it themselves.
The Other Theory
When dealing with vague and interesting history, you can’t help but find ‘the other theory’. This other theory dates back to World War II. Petrol was on short supply and trucks resorted to using kerosene. Kerosene is not the ideal fuel you want to pour in your tank. It is unstable and there are possibilities of a truck exploding into a ball of fire. Hence, truck drivers wrote ‘Horn Please, On Kerosene’ on their trucks. Gradually, it turned to ‘Horn Ok Please’.
So next time you’re on a highway and blaring your horn at a truck, remember this quirky piece of history!