TikTok, WeChat, and 57 more Chinese mobile apps are banned in India following tensions arising from the wake of the escalating conflict with China over a disputed border between the two Asian countries.
TikTok CEO Kevin Mayer is now facing his biggest challenge since he stepped in the position on June 1. Mayer, formerly led Disney’s streaming services, is now tasked with steering the business as it handles the potential loss of a user base in India surpassing more than half a million downloads.
TikTok’s India operations head said in a statement that the company was “in the process” of complying with India’s ban and organizing meetings with Indian government stakeholders. Mayer, who oversees TikTok’s global operations, addressed the roughly 2,000 employees working out of TikTok’s India offices on Tuesday, the Indian news outlet Business Today reported.
Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told reporters during a daily briefing that India has a responsibility to uphold the rights of Chinese businesses.
India’s decision to ban the China-linked apps and encourage people to use Indian applications is a continuing effort to reduce dependence on its neighbor’s products and hampers efforts by China’s largest corporations to expand beyond their own borders.
The Ministry of Information Technology in its official notice to ban the apps said that the apps are “prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order”.
India claimed its soldiers were mutilated after being beaten to death by Chinese forces in a deadly brawl at the border in the Himalayas on June 15, sparking a possibility of war between two nuclear-armed nations.
At present, India and China are engaged in a military standoff along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh.