The Indian government has ordered Google and Apple to take down the Chinese-owned Tiktok video app after a court expressed concerns over the spread of pornographic material. It (MeitY) is ensuring that by asking Google and Apple to delete it from the app stores.
TikTok was the third most installed app globally during Q1across the App Store and Google Play, the same rank it held during the previous quarter, according to Sensor Tower, a market analysis firm. Where Apple did not respond to the request for comment, TikTok did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Google's move.
If the ban comes through, TikTok stands to lose as many as 119 million users in India. Earlier this year, the US Federal Trade Commission fined the company $5.7 million over child privacy violations. He further contested that the Indian High Court in Madras had issued an interim order without giving TikTok the opportunity to defend itself.
Do you support the high court's decision to get the app removed or do you think that India is turning into China by enforcing censorship?
Quoting sources, a PTI report said instructions in this regard were sent to the two companies on Monday after the Supreme Court refused to interfere with the Madras High Court's order. And, the three-person Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi will hear the case on April 22 after observing the proceedings tomorrow.
Meanwhile, TikTok, in a statement, said: "We are committed to continuously enhancing our existing measures and introducing additional technical and moderation processes as a part of our ongoing commitment to our users in India". In India, the app has been cited for "encouraging pornography". The case is up for hearing in the Madras High Court, after which the SC will decide on its fate on 22nd April.
TikTok is problematic because it has been found to host user-generated content that is considered to be inappropriate.
The company had faith in the judicial system and was "optimistic about an outcome that would be well received by" its millions of users in India, he added. "Now it is up to the companies to do it or appeal the order".
TikTok is an immensely popular video sharing app that boasts of about 0.5 billion users, over 119 million of whom are in India.
TikTok also argues that its platform is merely an intermediary under the Information Technology Act and can not be held liable for the actions of third party users on the platform.