India is a country where an individual, his family, and the government are conservative. A country where diversity is the key to its future and culture remains its core, people don’t like to sway away from it. The metropolitan cities are already westernized in every way possible and even then culture remains at the forefront with festivals being celebrated even after so much of western influence. If metro cities are westernized, the rural part of India is as authentic as it can be. People still believe in the true version of where they come from and are keeping India together.
That being said, now try to fit TikTok, the application by ByteDance into the narrative of India; it doesn’t fit. An application that has a total video interface has been downloaded 240 million times in India. It has become one of the biggest video sharing platforms in the country and there are allegations on the app for spreading hate speech, pornography and making children vulnerable to the sexual predators. The Madras High Court has even asked for a government ban on the app for similar reasons.
However, ByteDance, the Chinese company has filed against the ban citing freedom of speech. The company says that more than 240 million people share their views and create content which is being banned for reasons which are not true. The statement that ByteDance submitted to the Supreme Court was accessed by Reuters. It read, “…amounts to curtailing of the rights of the citizens of India…who have been using the platform every day to express themselves and create content.”
The company is trying to get the order quashed which will depend on how the company fares in the hearing which will be held on Monday, next week. ByteDance has conquered the rural areas which are where most of the 1.3 billion people live in India. If the Madras High Court is true, then the ban should stay. And as far as the view of a user goes, TikTok has had to pay a hefty fine even in America for indulging in illegal data collection of children.
The fact that there is content on the app which can be termed as sexual tells us that the application needs to be reviewed at the very least, if not ban. That being said, the verdict in the Supreme Court will be the final call and it will decide the fate of the application. The Indian public is divided on this as some users defend the app while some bash it because of the vulnerabilities.