The government today banned 59 Chinese mobile apps, including the hugely popular TikTok, for reasons of national security and confidentiality just weeks after a deadly clash at the Himalayan border between nuclear-weapon countries.
The applications are “detrimental to the sovereignty and integrity of India, the defense of India, the security of the state and public order,” said the Ministry of Technology. information.
The ban on the app has cast a shadow over several celebrity accounts and handfuls of government agencies on the video sharing platform.
There was a time when TikTok was not very popular with Bollywood stars, but the app has now gained a lot of recognition with them. From Deepika Padukone, Sara Ali Khan, Shahid Kapoor to Madhuri Dixit – most of the flashy city stars use TikTok as a way to stay in touch with their fans and promote their films.
Actors Tiger Shroff, Disha Patani, Kartik Aaryan and Kirti Sanon are also among dozens of Bollywood celebrities who are part of the TikTok train.
Even the government, until very recently, had an active presence on TikTok. The MyGov India account, now deleted, was a verified account and had more than a million subscribers before being deleted from the platform.
MyGov is not the only official government account on TikTok.
From the government of Karnataka, the Greater Mumbai Municipal Corporation, the Maharashtra Department of Public Health to the Data Security Council of India, several government agencies have used the platform to publish information on best security practices data, raising awareness of COVID-19. The Press Information Bureau, the government’s nodal communications agency, even used its handle to share the Prime Minister’s messages on the impasse between India and China.
The Railways, which recently terminated a signaling contract with a Chinese company due to poor progress, had an account on TikTok. The now removed IRCTC handle focused on travel and the benefits of booking train tickets via IRCTC.
Upset by the Indo-Chinese deadlock on the Real Line of Control or LAC in the Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh, which resulted in the deaths of 20 Indian soldiers, citizens demanded a total ban on Chinese applications in the country.