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The Indian government has extended the ongoing proceedings prohibition on TikTok and 58 other apps including Shareit, UC Browser, Mi Community, Clash of Kings and more. These apps were among the 59 apps that were prohibited in June 2020 in India, as they were found “engaged in activities detrimental to the sovereignty and integrity of India, the defense of India, the security of the state and public order”.
According to reports from LiveMint Reuters and Medianama citing well-known sources, the Indian government has given new orders to the app companies as they are still dissatisfied with the answers they provide on data security and privacy issues. The apps banned in India are TikTok, Shareit, UC Browser, Clash of Kings, Mi Community, WeChat, UC News, Weibo, Xender, Xiaomi Mi Video Call, ES File Explorer, CamScanner and more.
The Indian government issued new orders in the week of Jan. 18 to extend the ban on these apps, the report said. TikTok, one of the top names in the banned apps list, has already started scaling back its operations from India after retaining all of its Indian employees even with the ongoing ban.
In a statement A TikTok spokesperson told Medianama, “We have worked steadfastly to comply with the orders of the Indian government issued on June 29, 2020. We are constantly striving to make our apps comply with local laws and regulations and do our best to address any concerns. It is disappointing, therefore, that in the next seven months, despite our best efforts, we have not been given a clear direction on how and when to restore our apps. It is very regrettable that we more than half a year of supporting our 2000+ employees in India have no choice but to reduce our workforce. We look forward to having the opportunity to relaunch TikTok and support the hundreds of millions of users, artists, storytellers, educators and artists in India. “
Last year, the Indian government banned more than 220 apps, including the second wave of 118 apps which could no longer be used from 2 September. PUBG Mobile was also one of these 118 apps that have been banned and while the developers of the popular battle royale game have announced an India-focused version of the game, it has yet to be released. It is unlikely to launch PUBG Mobile India could happen soon, as the government has just extended the ban on the first wave of banned apps from 2020.