You can no longer download TikTok in India

Madras High court has refused to lift its interim ban on Tik Tok and has appointed Arvind Datar as amicus curiae (independent counsel) to the court.

You can no longer download TikTok in India

TikTok, a social media application, owned by Chinese firm Bytedance, provided a statement after Madras High Court on Tuesday declined to lift its interim ban. TikTok officials said that they welcome the decision of the Madras High Court to appoint Arvind Datar as amicus curiae (independent counsel) to the court. They have faith in the Indian judicial system and are very optimistic about an outcome that would be well received by over 120 million monthly active users in India, who continue using TikTok to showcase their creativity and capture moments that matter in their everyday lives.

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On Monday, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) had directed tech giants Apple and Google to block downloads of the app from App store and Play store respectively which has now come into effect. 

The court will be hearing the case further on April 24.

Notably, the application has already been banned in Indonesia and Bangladesh. There are several issues with the application with the primary concern being that children of all age groups are using it extensively even though the age limit is 13 years. This enables them to easily fall prey for sexual predators.

A 2019 BBC investigation in the UK reported that there are numerous pedophilic comments and interactions on the app. The investigation further reported while TikTok was quite active in removing illegal content or comments that were posted on its app, it was not so when it came to removing or blocking the person who put up such content or comments.

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The list of reasons for banning the app provided by Madras High Court are the availability of pornographic content, exposure of children to sexual predators, people being made subject to mockery or pranks, violation of privacy and its addictive tendency among youngsters. In its interim order, the Court stated that 'By becoming addicted to TikTok App, and similar apps, or cyber games, the future of the youngsters and mindset of the children are in danger’.

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