Government of India blocked 59 Chinese apps from Indian markets stating a threat to national security. This list includes ByteDance’s small video making app Tik Tok which has a user base of about 200 million. According to two lawyers, Tik Tok is considering to challenge the Government’s decision in the court of law.
The lawyers claimed that Tik Tok is consulting a legal firm in Mumbai for its options against the imposed ban. Government accused the 59 apps of causing a threat to national security by stealing and transferring the data of Indian users to other countries.
The company has decided to approach the Government first presenting its side and stating that it did not steal data and based on the response it receives, it will take a legal action. As told by the lawyer aware of the matter, the burning questions in the case are that if the Government followed the due procedure and gave enough time to Tik Tok to respond to the allegations and if they conducted a through investigation in the matter before declaring the ban.
“An argument can be made on the grounds of principles of natural justice, as the company was not even given a hearing before the ban was imposed. However, the allegations against them are very serious since they pertain to national security. In the past, courts have declined interfering against government action in such national security matters,” the lawyer told.
The law firm is also looking for a method to directly approach the Supreme Court for their case. The govt used a provision in the Information Technology Act to initiate action against Tik Tok. The section (69A) allows the government to block online content or applications where it believes the content or the platform is a threat to national security. The ban on Tik Tok has created a big opportunity for Indian app developers and any decision henceforth will be crucial for the country’s entrepreneurs.