India Government Blocks 232 Apps Operated by Chinese and Foreign Entities

The Indian government has blocked as many as 232 apps operated by foreign entities, many of them Chinese, for being involved in betting, gambling and unauthorised loan services.
February 09, 2023 | 05:00
India Government Blocks 232 Apps Operated by Chinese and Foreign Entities

Indian Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) has issued orders to block these apps following instructions from Ministry of Home Affairs.

"The order to block 138 apps that were involved in betting, gambling and money laundering were issued last evening. Separately, an order to block 94 apps engaged in unauthorised loan service has also been issued. These apps were being operated from offshore entities, including Chinese. They were posing a threat to the economic stability of the country," the official, who did not wish to be named , told PTI.

The matter came under the scanner early last year when the Home Ministry noticed a high proliferation of Chinese ‘loan apps.' More than 270 such apps were also removed from the Play Store last year following intervention by the government, sources confirmed.

In fact, the matter of proliferation and surveillance of these apps has come up several times during coordination meetings of the intel and policing agencies towards the end of 2022, where the need to focus on surveillance, monitoring and spreading awareness through capacity building was discussed.

The e matter was also addressed on priority following an increase in the number of cases of suicide, particularly in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, by those who lost money to betting apps or took loans using these apps.

Since June 2020, India has banned over 300 Chinese apps, including WeChat, TikTok, Shareit, Helo, Likee, UC News, Bigo Live, UC Browser, ES File Explorer and the Mi apps.

Tarah Nguyen
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