India bans Tiktok


KATHMANDU, April 17: The Government of India has ordered a ban on Tiktok, an application for creating and sharing short video owned by Chinese internet technology company ByteDance. The video application allows a user to create short music videos of 3-15 seconds and short looping videos of 3-60 seconds in smartphones.

India on Tuesday ordered Google and Apple to remove the video application from their app store after a high court in Chennai called for the ban on April 3 expressing serious concern over the spread of pornographic content.

The app was dragged into controversy after a man accidentally shot a 19-year old man through his head as he was posing to make a short video on Tiktok in Delhi on Sunday.

The United States in February had fined Tiktok $5.7 million for illegally collecting personal information from children. The video app is already banned in Bangladesh.

Tiktok, one of the most popular apps, was launched as Douyin in China in September 2016 and was later introduced to other parts of the world. One of the most popular apps, Tiktok has 500 million users worldwide, with Indian alone accounting for 120 million active users. It had gained popularity after it became the most downloaded app in the US in October 2018.

The ban comes after the Indian Supreme Court rejected an appeal by Tiktok to stay the ban order.

Tiktok has maintained that they have removed six million videos, breaching its guidelines, in India since last July, and is committed to ensuring “our platform remains safe and positive for our Indian users.”

The video app has already been taken down from the Apple store and Google Play store.