Indian Government on Monday made a big statement by putting a ban on 59 applications, most of them popular Chinese applications such as TikTok, Shareit, Mi Video Call, Club Factory and Cam Scanner, citing a serious threat to national security and sovereignty.
The ban comes amid continuing tensions on the border between India and China and covers a variety of applications from e-commerce to gaming, social media, browsers, instant messaging and file sharing.
“Upon receiving recent credible inputs that such apps pose threat to sovereignty and integrity of India, the Government of India has decided to disallow the usage … both [on] mobile and non-mobile Internet-enabled devices,” the Ministry of Electronics and IT (Meity) said in statement.
According to reliable sources, Meity has issued instructions to Google and Apple to remove the banned applications from their respective application stores. Apart from this, telecom operators and Internet service providers will be asked to block access and use of these applications on their networks.
The Ministry said it was invoking its power under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act read with the relevant provisions of the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) Rules, 2009. Taking under consideration the emergent nature of threats, the government has decided to block 59 apps in view of information available they are engaged in activities which are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order,” the government said.
The IT Ministry revealed that it received many complaints, including misuse of mobile apps for stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorised manner to servers which have locations outside India. “The compilation of these data, its mining and profiling by elements hostile to national security and defence of India, which ultimately impinges upon the sovereignty and integrity of India, is a matter of very deep and immediate concern which requires emergency measures,” it said.
Full list of 59 apps
7.Clash of Kings
8.DU battery saver
31.Mi Video Call – Xiaomi
33.ES File Explorer
34.Viva Video – QU Video Inc
37.New Video Status
40.Cache Cleaner DU App studio
43.Hago Play With New Friends
45.Clean Master – Cheetah Mobile
54.QQ Security Center
57.V fly Status Video