Written byAyushi Chamoli ·
The Madras High Court yesterday asked the Centre to put a ban on the famous app, TikTok, saying that it encourages pornographic content.
Moreover, the media is also directed to stop the telecast of videos made via the app.
In February this year, M Manikandan, the Information Technology Minister of Tamil Nadu, also said that he would seek Centre's help to ban TikTok.
While listening to a petition filed by Muthu Kumar, Madurai-based lawyer-cum-social activist, Justice SS Sundar and Justice N Kirubakaran said that the app makes children vulnerable to sexual predators.
"There is a possibility of the children contacting strangers directly," the court added.
The concerned officials were blamed for not learning a lesson from the Blue Whale Challenge, which pushed children towards committing suicide.
Further, the court in its order said, "The officials should be alert with regard to these types of problems." The court added, "People are making cruel humor against innocent third parties. Even television channels are telecasting TikTok videos, which are liable to be prohibited."
The HC has asked the Centre to respond before April 16 and sought a ban on downloading the mobile app and telecast of the videos from the app.
Moreover, the HC also asked, "whether the Union of India will enact a statute, like Children's Online Privacy Protection Act, enacted by the United States, to prevent the children from becoming cyber/online victims."
The court also added that there is inappropriate content available on the app, which is its dangerous aspect, and the pranks made on the app violates privacy.
After the court's verdict, Kumar's lawyer, Neelamegam, said, "We are happy about the interim order."
TikTok's spokesperson said that the company will be waiting for court's orders and will take necessary actions according to the local laws.
The spokesperson said, "Maintaining a safe and positive in-app environment is our priority."
TikTok is a Chinese video app, also known as Douyin in China, which allows users to create short videos with special effects and share them on various social media platforms.
Kumar in his petition cited child abuse, suicides, pornographic content and cultural degradation as the reasons for ban.
In India, TikTok has around 5.4 crore monthly active users. The company had earlier agreed to make a model code document, based on the lines of Model Code of Conduct, for itself to curb fake news during the Lok Sabha Elections and in future.
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