INDIA HAS ADDED 118 more Chinese-owned apps to the list of 59, including TikTok, that it banned in June on national security grounds. The newly sanctioned apps include some of the most popular: Alibaba’s Taobao, Ant’s Alipay, Tencent’s game, PUBG Mobile, and Baidu’s search engine.
Announcing the latest bans, India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology said that the apps were prejudicial to the ‘sovereignty and integrity’ of India and to security and public order. The ministry said it had received complaints about the apps sending users’ data to servers outside India.
Delhi has also recently imposed new restrictions on Chinese investment and informally told its telecoms operators to phase out Chinese equipment from suppliers such as Huawei from their networks.
The latest bans follow clashes last weekend between Indian and Chinese forces in the Himalayas and the reported death by mine blast of one Indian soldier, a member of the ethnically Tibetan elite force that patrols the high-altitude border, the first casualty since at least 20 Indian soldiers and an unknown number of Chinese troops were killed in June during a high-altitude confrontation in Ladakh’s Galwan Valley.
China has said that no Indian soldier had died in the latest skirmishes but may be hiding behind semantics.
State media is ramping up its condemnatory rhetoric, which does not bode well for next week’s meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation in Russia which both China and India’s defence ministers are attending.