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The Indian government has a history of banning software with apparent links to China.

Chris Kerr, News Editor

February 15, 2022

1 Min Read

A number of apps and games including popular battle royale shooter Garena Free Fire have been banned in India. 

The Indian government has previously blocked apps that have apparent links to China, but publisher Garena is based in Singapore. Chinese company Tencent does, however, own an 18.7 percent stake in Garena's parent company Sea Limited.

As reported by TechCrunch, India's Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology has issued the bans on national security grounds, citing Section 69a of the IT ACT, 2000.

A Google spokesperson confirmed the order in a statement, explaining it has notified the affected developers and temporarily blocked access to the apps on the Google Play Store in India.

Over the past two years, regulators in India have banned hundreds of apps including PUBG Mobile, which was published by Tencent. PUBG owner PUBG Corp subsequently attempted to regain entry to India by creating a new version of the game called PUBG Mobile India without the involvement of Tencent.

About the Author(s)

Chris Kerr

News Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Game Developer news editor Chris Kerr is an award-winning journalist and reporter with over a decade of experience in the game industry. His byline has appeared in notable print and digital publications including Edge, Stuff, Wireframe, International Business Times, and PocketGamer.biz. Throughout his career, Chris has covered major industry events including GDC, PAX Australia, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and Develop Brighton. He has featured on the judging panel at The Develop Star Awards on multiple occasions and appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss breaking news.

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