TikTok Ban: Madras HC order based on exaggerations made by petitioner

Lester Mason
April 17, 2019

After the Supreme Court refused to stay Madras High Court's order imposing a ban on TikTok app, the central government has reportedly asked Google and Apple to drop the Chinese video-sharing application from their app stores.

On April 3, the Madras High Court had in an interim order directed the Centre to ban Tiktok app, after concerns were raised about access to pornographic content through it.

The High Court asked the government to prohibit download of TikTok application.

Google said it does not comment on individual apps but adheres to local laws, reported Reuters. In addition to ordering Google and Apple to make the app unavailable for downloading, the court also ordered media houses to stop telecasting videos made using the TikTok app. "We have faith in the Indian judicial system and we are optimistic about an outcome that would be well received by over 120 million monthly active users in India, who continue using TikTok to showcase their creativity and capture moments that matter in their everyday lives", the company said.

TikTok had been downloaded more than 240 million times in India, app analytics firm Sensor Tower said in February.

The rise of Chinese short video-sharing app TikTok in India has been so spectacular over the past year that it is now almost impossible for any social media user to not have come across its content. The app already has a user base in excess of 100 million and the app isn't going to disappear from their phone just because it's been banned.

TikTok (through PLR Chambers) approached the Supreme Court asking for the order to be set aside, as it would cause irreparable loss to the company. More than 30 million users in India installed it in January 2019, 12 times more than in the same month a year ago.

However, the app wasn't available on Google's Play store in India late on Tuesday.

"The Petitioner in the impugned order herein has invoked the Writ jurisdiction of the Hon'ble Madras High Court under Artcile 226 of the Constitution of India, as a "Public Interest Litigation".

The case for ByteDance is being argued by Abhishek Manu Singhvi who is a senior advocate in India.

It did not comment on MeitY's direction to Apple and Google.

TikTok is problematic because it has been found to host user-generated content that is considered to be inappropriate. Having said that, the company had recently announced that it had removed videos which were in violation of their guidelines. The company, on the other hand, has said it can't be held responsible for the content uploaded by third-parties. On Tuesday, the Madras High Court also pushed the hearing to April 24.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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