The Supreme Court will hear a plea challenging the Madras High Court order imposing a ban on Chinese video app 'Tik Tok' on April 15. The matter was put up before the bench headed by Chief Justice of India Justice Ranjan Gogoi on Monday.
In its April 4 order, the Madras High Court had directed the government to ban the app, saying it was "encouraging pornography." The order also restrained the media from telecasting videos made using Chinese video app. The order was passed by the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court comprising Justices N Kirubakaran and S S Sundar.
The High Court bench had noted that through this app, children are being exposed to inappropriate content including pornography. Minors are also being exposed to strangers through this app, the court had said. "It is evident from media reports that pornography and inappropriate contents are made available in this kind of cyber application. The children are exposed to strangers and there is a possibility of the photographs and other private details of the children are being landed in the hands of predators or third parties," the bench observed.
Following this, the court had also asked the state government to file a report regarding the steps taken by the state authorities to prohibit the 'Tik Tok' app. Both the Central government and the state governments were directed to respond before April 16.
"On March 27, an auto driver was arrested for posting a video that included a woman from Chennai on Tik Tok mobile app. A 15-year-old girl is said to have committed suicide at Mumbai for being scolded by her grandmother for use of Tik Tok Mobile App," said the plea filed by Madurai's senior lawyer Muthu Kumar. "An old man is said to have fallen in the waterfalls in Valparai while taking a selfie or Tik Tok video. Before many tragic incidents would occur, the Government has to take appropriate steps," added the plea.
TikTok, an app that allows users to create and share short videos with special effects, has over 54 million monthly active users in India.
(With inputs from agencies.)