India bans 43 more Chinese apps...

Dhaka, Tuesday   26 January 2021

India bans 43 more Chinese apps

 International Desk

 Published: 04:41 PM, 25 November 2020  

India bans 43 more Chinese apps

India bans 43 more Chinese apps

The Indian government has blocked 43 more mobile apps, mostly Chinese, for activities that are "prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order". Four apps owned by China's retail giant, the Alibaba Group, are on the latest banned list.

The apps were banned under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology said today.

The move was based on "comprehensive reports received from Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Center, Ministry of Home Affairs," said a government statement.

The Indian government had first banned 59 Chinese apps in June as tension with China peaked following the deaths of 20 Indian soldiers in a clash with Chinese troops in eastern Ladakh's Galwan Valley.

In September, the country banned 118 more apps saying they posed a threat to the its sovereignty.

A total of 220 apps now stand blocked, including the viral video platform TikTok and the popular mobile shooting game, PUBG, in what ministers have described as a "digital strike".

"The government is committed to protect the interests of citizens and sovereignty and integrity of India on all fronts and it shall take all possible steps to ensure that," the Centre said today.

The blocked apps include Alibaba Workbench, AliExpress, Alipay Cashier, CamCard and WeDate.

AliExpress, a China-based online shopping platform, is popular in India among traders and small businesses who rely on it for supplies and components. The ban effectively places a check on imports from China.

Another popular app to be banned is Lalamove. The logistics provider offers local courier and delivery services and employs a large number of delivery partners. Most of the other blocked apps are social media and dating applications. In earlier bans, the government had focused more on sharing platforms and games.

Snack Video, which is considered to be TikTok's rival, is owned by China-based Beijing Kuaishou Technology company. It is one of the most downloaded apps in south Asian markets. It is called 'Kuaishou' in China and 'Kwai' in other markets.

'Happy Fish', an interactive game download millions of times on the Android platform, has also been blocked. It was developed by Happy Elements Technology Beijing Ltd, a Chinese company.

Indian and Chinese troops have been locked in a standoff in several places in Ladakh since April, when China's People's Liberation Army attempted to transgress the Line of Actual Control, the de-facto border between the two countries.

The two countries have had several rounds of military and diplomatic dialogues in which India has demanded that the Chinese troops return to their April positions.