In wake of the ongoing Indo-China border standoff, the Government of India has banned 59 mobile applications of Chinese origin, including famous Tiktok, CamScanner, UC Browser, Shein and Shareit. It is a preventive step to curb the activities of such apps which are “prejudicial to the sovereignty and integrity of India, defense of India and public order”, said the press release by MEITY.


Legal Footing:


The ban has been imposed under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act,2000 read with the relevant provisions of the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) Rules 2009.

Section 69A of the said Act provides , “ Power  to issue directions for blocking for public access of any information through any computer resource: Where the Central Government or any of its officers specially authorised by it… is satisfied that it is necessary or expedient so to do, in the interest of sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States or public order or for preventing incitement to the commission of any cognizable offence relating to above, it may… by order, direct any agency of the Government or intermediary to block for access by the public or cause to be blocked for access by the public any information generated, transmitted, received, stored or hosted in any computer resource.”


“The Ministry of Information Technology has received many complaints from various sources including several reports about misuse of some mobile apps available on Android and iOS platforms for stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorised manner to servers which have locations outside India. The compilation of these data, its mining and profiling by elements hostile to national security and defence of India, which ultimately impinges upon the sovereignty and integrity of India, is a matter of very deep and immediate concern which requires emergency measures,” stated the press release.


On the basis of credible inputs and various complaints alleging data and privacy breach, received by various government departments like Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN), the Government of India, “has decided to disallow the usage of certain Apps, used in both mobile and non-mobile Internet enabled devices.”


This is a timely measure taken to safeguard the data security and privacy of 130 crore Indian mobile and internet users and to ensure safety and sovereignty of Indian cyberspace.

This legal news has been reported by Shruti Singh Chauhan who is a law student at PSIT Law College and edited by  Samreen Ahmed, Research Assistant, Research & Innovation Department (ARIL), MyLawman