The government of India has decided to ban 59 apps of Chinese origin as border tensions simmer in Ladakh after a violent, fatal face-off between the Indian and Chinese armies. The list of apps banned by the government includes TikTok, which is extremely popular.

The Centre has blocked 59 apps with Chinese links that included the hugely popular TikTok, WeChat and UC Browser, amid a huge economic backlash against China following the June 15 clashes at Ladakh in which 20 Indian soldiers died in action. Sources said inputs from intelligence agencies suggested that the apps have been violating the terms of usage, compromising users privacy, and being used as spyware or malware. Within minutes of the announcement, the Indian government’s TikTok account MyGov, which had 1.1 milliorn followers, was disabled.

Among the apps that have been banned are Sharit, Kwai, UC Browser, Baidu map, Shein, clash of Kings, DU battery saver, Helo, Likee, YouCam makeup, Mi Community, CM Browsers, Virus Cleaner, Apus Browser, among others.

chinese apps banned
(L) TOI (R) businessinsider

A government press release announcing the ban stated:

“The Ministry of Information Technology, invoking it’s power under section 69A of the Information Technology Act read with the relevant provisions of the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) Rules 2009 and in view of the emergent nature of threats has decided to block 59 apps since in view of information available they are engaged in activities which is prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order”.

The press release further said that the Ministry of Information Technology has received “many representations raising concerns from citizens regarding security of data and risk to privacy relating to operation of certain apps”. It further says that the move to ban these Chinese apps move will “safeguard the interests of crores of Indian mobile and internet users”. This decision is a targeted move to ensure safety and sovereignty of Indian cyberspace.

The move comes a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi said India has given a “befitting response” to China. He also spoke of the countrywide call for boycott of Chinese goods, juxtaposing it against the government’s “Atma Nirbhar Bharat” campaign. “We will buy local and be vocal for local and this will help India become stronger,” he said.

In a statement this evening, the government said the apps were blocked “in view of information available they are engaged in activities which is prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order”.

Here’s the complete list of the apps banned:

1. TikTok
2. Shareit
3. Kwai
4. UC Browser
5. Baidu map
6. Shein
7. Clash of Kings
8. DU battery saver
9. Helo
10. Likee
11. YouCam makeup
12. Mi Community
13. CM Browers
14. Virus Cleaner
15. APUS Browser
16. ROMWE
17. Club Factory
18. Newsdog
19. Beutry Plus
20. WeChat
21. UC News
22. QQ Mail
23. Weibo
24. Xender
25. QQ Music
26. QQ Newsfeed
26. QQ Newsfeed
27. Bigo Live
28. SelfieCity
29. Mail Master
30. Parallel Space
31. Mi Video Call – Xiaomi
32. WeSync
33. ES File Explorer
34. Viva Video – QU Video Inc
35. Meitu
36. Vigo Video
37. New Video Status
38. DU Recorder
39. Vault- Hide
40. Cache Cleaner DU App studio
41. DU Cleaner
42. DU Browser
43. Hago Play With New Friends
44. Cam Scanner
45. Clean Master – Cheetah Mobile
46. Wonder Camera
47. Photo Wonder
48. QQ Player
49. We Meet
50. Sweet Selfie
51. Baidu Translate
52. Vmate
53. QQ International
54. QQ Security Center
55. QQ Launcher
56. U Video
57. V fly Status Video
58. Mobile Legends
59. DU Privacy