Ola uses an April Fool's Day prank to drive home a message – India needs more toilets

Ola uses an April Fool's Day prank to drive home a message – India needs more toilets
Ola restrooms was the startup's April Fool's Day prankOla official Facebook account
  • Ola has been advertising its new feature Ola restrooms – an on-demand mobile toilet van.
  • While Ola restrooms joins the legacy of Ola’s epic April Fool’s day pranks, it is also a part of the company’s social mission.
  • Soon, Ola users can contribute ₹1 per ride to make way for clean toilets in India.
Over the past two days, Indian ride-hailing startup Ola has been relentlessly advertising about its new feature – Ola restrooms – a mobile toilet van for you to use the bathroom whenever and wherever you need. And before you say it’s a ridiculous idea, well it’s an April Fool’s Day prank by the company.

However, that’s not it. Ola is driving home a bigger message through the prank. Twitter users had already started calling out Ola for using toilets as a prank given that India ranks highest in various issues related to sanitation.

In fact, a report done by WaterAid shows some really troubling numbers for India – 732 million people still “suffer from fear and indignity of relieving themselves in the open or in unsafe or unhygienic toilets”, more than 355 million women and girls have to wait in long queues just for access to the toilet making India top the list for the longest queue for the toilet.

Turning around its April Fool’s Day prank, Ola is now offering its riders a chance to contribute and make way for access to toilets in India. They have partnered with Gramalaya, an organisation dedicated to providing better water and sanitary facilities in rural areas. Through this partnership, starting April 2 Ola users can voluntarily contribute ₹1 per ride to Gramalaya.

Over the years, Ola has almost always played a prank on its users on April Fool’s starting from announcing Ola newsroom to Ola Air – a chopper service.


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