Chinese video-sharing application TikTok has been removed from the Google Play Store and the iOS app store in India a day after the Indian government asked that access to the popular application, which has over 230 million downloads in India, be banned.
While Apple and Google are yet to comment on the directive, TikTok said in a statement: "We are committed to continuously enhancing our existing measures and introducing additional technical and moderation processes as a part of our ongoing commitment to our users in India".
The Court had passed the interim order on a public interest litigation (PIL) petition which sought to ban Tik Tok app on the ground that it allegedly contained contents that "degraded culture and encouraged pornography".
Users that don't already have the app will no longer be able to download it.
TikTok even removed 6 million videos from its service last week to address the problem of inappropriate content on the app.
The Indian high court's interim order also included a request to the central government of India to advocate a ban nationwide. TikTok app is available to download on Apple's App Store and Google's Play Store in Android smartphones.
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The company had faith in the judicial system and was "optimistic about an outcome that would be well received by" its millions of users in India, he added.
"This marked a year-over-year increase of 70 percent from Q1 2018, when 110 million users installed the hit app for the first time", Sensor Tower stated. The case is up for hearing in the Madras High Court, after which the SC will decide on its fate on 22nd April.
During the hearing on Tuesday, TikTok submitted before the Court that it has technology in place to filter inappropriate content, reports Bar and Bench.
The top court referred the case back to the state court, where a judge on Tuesday rejected Bytedance's request to put the ban order on hold, K. Neelamegam, a lawyer arguing against Bytedance in the case, said.
"The said ban, if not lifted immediately, shall cause severe prejudice and irreparable harm to the Petitioner Company and result in competitors gaining a significant and potentially irreversible advantage over the petitioner company". 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.
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