TikTok is back on Google Play Store and Apple App Store after it was taken down from online app stores last month following an interim court order. The Madras High court had asked the government to stop the downloads of the Chinese short-form mobile video app. However, the app can now be downloaded and used without any restrictions.
Earlier on April 3, the Madras High court had observed that TikTok encouraged pornography and had asked the government to prevent its downloads. It had passed an interim order on public interest litigation which sought a ban on the app on the ground that it allegedly carried contents that "degraded culture and encouraged pornography". As a result, the app was taken off by both Apple and Google from their respective app stores. Later, on April 24, the Madras High court's bench of justices N Kirubakaran and S S Sundar lifted the ban with the condition that the platform should not be used to host obscene videos.
"Though it is admitted that this possible mischief and irreparable damage that may be caused to innocent children and women cannot be ruled out, taking note of the safety features projected by the 9th respondent (Bytedance India) ... the interim order granted by this Court on 03.04.2019 is vacated," the Madurai bench of the Madras High Court said in a written order, according to The Economic Times.
The ban was lifted after TikTok introduced several measures in India to ensure the safety of its users. It tied up with Cyber Peace Foundation to launch educational posters on online safety. It also launched the localised version of its Safety Centre, a local website that consists of safety policies, tools and resources to equip users with product education and protection measures when using TikTok.
"What we are doing today is a continuation of our commitment to safety, so today we are actually launching a safety centre. As part of that, there are three different initiatives. One is our anti-bullying hub, which basically means we are launching new resources and tools to stay safe online and also this entire hub is in ten Indian languages," Said Helena Lersch, Director, Global Public Policy at TikTok.
The company also introduced a tool on its platform to curtail bullying and abusive comments on TikTok.
Edited By: Udit Verma