The Indian Home Ministry has indicated that 59 Chinese apps it has blocked are not likely to make a return soon. It claims the apps were “prejudicial to the sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order.”
The decision, which comes in the wake of deadly clashes between the two countries earlier this month, has been criticised as a hasty political move. India’s Ministry of Information Technology claims the ban was the result of “many complaints from various sources” about apps “stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorised manner”. App operators have 48 hours within which to put forward their arguments to a central government committee.
Millions of users having been left both surprised and disappointed.
According to India Today, Nikhil Gandhi, TikTok’s India’s head, issued a statement refuting the charges of siphoning of data, unauthorised use thereof, and posing a threat to the sovereignty of the country. Ghandi highlighted that TikTok was available in 14 Indian languages acted as a means livelihood for millions. Other app creators are yet to respond to the ban.
Google has been requested to remove the apps from it’s Play Store. Aside from blocking new downloads, it will also be made impossible for existing users to update the apps in question. India’s Department of Telecommunications has also instructed service providers to block data flow to these apps.
China, meanwhile, has asked India to uphold the legal rights of international firms.
Umm Muhammed Umar