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By Saradha | Jun 30, 2020 09:52 AM

India bannned 59 Chinese origin apps including TikTok on Monday. Some of the other popular apps from the list including Shareit, UC Browser, Camscanner, Clubfactory among others. 

How will Govt. Implement Ban of Chinese Apps? What will be the impact?

What is the legal basis behind the move?

The ban will be enforced under Section 69A of the Information Technology At 2000 (“Power to issue directions for blocking for public access of any information through any computer resource”): “Where the Central Government or any of its officers specially authorised by it… is satisfied that it is necessary or expedient so to do, in the interest of sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States or public order or for preventing incitement to the commission of any cognizable offence relating to above, it may… by order, direct any agency of the Government or intermediary to block for access by the public or cause to be blocked for access by the public any information generated, transmitted, received, stored or hosted in any computer resource.”

The Ministry of Information and Technology stated that it “has received many complaints from various sources including several reports about misuse of some mobile apps… for stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorized manner to servers which have locations outside India.” The Ministry further noted that this “ultimately impinges upon the sovereignty and integrity of India, is a matter of very deep and immediate concern which requires emergency measures.”

How will the ban be imposed?

Government is likely to send instructions to internet service providers ordering them to block these apps. Users will mostly see a message that says that the access to these apps have been restricted on the request of the government. 

Few apps which do not require the users to have an active internet connection will continue to be used. However, further downloads of these apps will mostly be blocked by Google’s Play Store and Apple’s App Store. 

What is going to be the impact of the ban?

Some of the apps such as TikTok is extremely popular India with over 100 million active users in the country. Most of the Indian creators were also using it as their source of income. Many of the offices and employees in India could lose their jobs. 

Is the ban permanent?

“TikTok was banned in India on the order of the Madras High Court for a few days last year, but it came back soon after the court vacated the ban. This action, however, is more sweeping, impacts more apps, and has been taken in a specific strategic and national security context. It could be a warning to bigger Chinese businesses in India, and to China itself,” The New Indian Express reported.

TikTok was removed from the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store on Tuesday. TikTok released a statement as a response to the decision on Tuesday.


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