With China showing no intent to reduce the tensions in the border, the Modi government has blocked 118 more mobile applications, including popular gaming app PUBG, terming them prejudicial to the sovereignty, integrity and defence of the nation. The banned apps include Baidu, Baidu Express Edition, Tencent Watchlist, FaceU, WeChat Reading and Tencent Weiyun, besides PUBG Mobile and PUBG Mobile Lite, according to an official statement.
“Government blocks 118 mobile apps which are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order,” it said.
It said the IT Ministry had received 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 to servers 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,” the statement said.
It may be recalled that on June 29, the government had banned 59 Chinese apps, including hugely popular TikTok and UC Browser, saying they were prejudicial to sovereignty, integrity and security of the country.
That ban, applicable on apps such as WeChat and Bigo Live, had come in the backdrop of a stand-off along the Line of Actual Control in Ladakh with Chinese troops.
The June ban was followed by blocking of 47 more Chinese apps that were clones and variants of the ones banned earlier.