India takes bold move in waging economic war with China as the country chooses to ban everything, including popular mobile applications.
The Indian government called the move as a digital strike, as 59 Chinese apps were restricted, including the famed TikTok app. The country is eager to cut all Chinese apps because of the possible danger in the security of Indian citizens.
Additionally, the government viewed these apps as a threat to society, saying these apps are not only for entertainment but also for propaganda agencies of the Chinese government. Back in July, there were more than 47 apps that were banned because these are clones of previously banned apps.
Reports circulated that more clone apps can be found in the Google app store, which prompts the Indian government to put a bar on the platform to investigate. “Any app that does not comply with Indian laws should not be allowed,” said Ashwani Mahajan, leader of Swadeshi Jagran Manch.
Sovereign and Security Issues
The rising tension between China and India began in June when the latter decided to protect its sovereign and security. Some Chinese mobile applications collect user information and contained Chinese spyware that transmits information to their government.
From TikTok, WeChat, Helo, ShareIT, and UC browser, prominent apps were completely blocked from being downloaded on app stores.
India imposed a law, Information Technology Act, which bans applications engaged in activities prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defense of India, the security of the state and public order. The government also cited more complaints about Indian users’ data being transferred abroad without authorization.
The Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) said they receive complaints from various sources that Chinese apps misuse and steal users’ data to servers outside India. “These apps have been there for a long time, and there are some privacy and security issues with them,” said a government official.
This move follows through the US’ decision to do the same, and ban Chinese apps and companies. Last week, US President Donald Trump signed an executive order banning 106 Chinese apps, including the famous TikTok.
Trump gave a deadline for Chinese app TikTok to be acquired by a US firm, before completely banning by mid-September. The US President accused TikTok of capturing users’ information and network activity, location, and browsing history.
Experts believe these heightened tensions cause massive losses to Chinese digital companies, blowing China’s Digital Silk Route ambition.