Indian government bans 59 Chinese-owned apps, including TikTok

Ruben Fields
June 30, 2020

The companies have been invited to offer clarifications before a government panel, which will decide whether the ban can be removed or will stay. Likewise, there have been similar bipartisan concerns, flagged by various public representatives, both outside and inside the Parliament of India, the statement said, adding that there has been a strong chorus in the public space to take strict action against apps that harm India's sovereignty as well as the privacy of our citizens.

He said TikTok has democratised the internet by making it available in 14 Indian languages, with hundreds of millions of users, artistes, story-tellers, educators and performers depending on it for their livelihood, many of whom are first-time internet users.

The Indian government has banned TikTok, the hugely popular social media app, as part of sweeping anti-China measures after a violent confrontation between Indian and Chinese troops.

Law, Electronics and Information Technology Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad said that government has banned apps for safety, security, defence, sovereignty and integrity of India.

"Further, if we are requested to in the future we would not do so".

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Tarun Pathak, an analyst at research firm Counterpoint, said the order would impact roughly one in three smartphone user in India.

Some other apps that have been banned include Kwai, Baidu map, DU battery saver, Likee, YouCam makeup, Mi Community, Virus Cleaner, Club Factory, Newsdog, WeChat, Weibo, Xender, We Meet, Sweet Selfie, Baidu Translate and QQ Launcher.

Meanwhile, Indian counterparts of such apps have thanked the government for taking the step.

The ban on the 59 apps is aimed at safeguarding the privacy of 1.3bn Indians though the move comes during a nationwide call to boycott Chinese products and services following the recent border clash between the two countries.

Apart from TikTok, other China-based companies such as Xiaomi, Huawei, Oppo and OnePlus had also donated to the fund. Apps belonging to Oppo, Huawei, and OnePlus are not included in the current list. "We expect the government to continue their support for the Indian startup ecosystem".

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