India’s digital strike on China: Govt bans 59 Chinese apps

Amid the heightened tensions with China after the Galwan clash, the Indian government banned 59 Chinese apps. The development has come in the wake of a massive spike in tensions along the 3,488-kilometer-long de-facto border with China, following the Galwan Valley clash in which 20 Indian soldiers were killed in action. An unspecified number of Chinese troops were also killed in the clash on the intervening night of June 15 and 16, which happened when Indian soldiers had gone to inspect whether the Chinese had withdrawn from the Galwan River bend in the valley which was on the Indian side of the LAC. The Indian and Chinese troops have been engaged in the eyeball-to-eyeball situation along the LAC at several locations for nearly two months now. The first violent clash had taken place between the troops of the two armies at Pangong Tso on May 5, in which nearly 100 troops were injured.

The list of 59 Chinese mobile apps includes TikTok, SHAREit, UC Browser, Baidu map, Helo, Mi Community, Club Factory, WeChat, UC News, Weibo, Xender, Meitu, Mi Video Call – Xiaomi, CamScanner, Clean Master – Cheetah Mobile, etc. The order issued by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology stated that the 59 apps that have been banned by the Government of India “are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order”. The order added: “This move will safeguard the interests of crores of Indian mobile and internet users. This decision is a targeted move to ensure the safety and sovereignty of Indian cyberspace.”

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