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Soon after the Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court lifted the ban on the Chinese 15-second video app TikTok, the company committed to continuously enhance its safety features for users in India.

In an email response to BuzzInContent.com, a TikTok spokesperson said, “While we’re pleased that our efforts to fight against misuse of the platform has been recognised, the work is never ‘done’ on our end. We are committed to continuously enhancing our safety features as a testament to our ongoing commitment to our users in India.”

The matter was taken up on April 24 following the Supreme Court’s direction to the HC to decide on interim relief for TikTok. The Apex Court had stated that if the Madras High Court fails to decide on the interim relief on April 24, the interim order would stand vacated.

The Bench of Justices N Kirubakaran and SS Sundar lifted the ban after hearing submissions made by TikTok and Amicus Curiae, Senior Advocate Arvind Datar.

Reacting to the relief after a week’s ban, the TikTok spokesperson said, “We are glad about this decision and we believe it is also greatly welcomed by our thriving community in India, who use TikTok as a platform to showcase their creativity. We are grateful for the opportunity to continue serving our users better.”

Appearing for TikTok, Senior Advocate Isaac Mohanlal informed the court that there is technology in place to ensure that nude/obscene content is not uploaded through the app. A counter-affidavit to this effect had also been filed by TikTok. Further, TikTok also made submissions on the steps taken to counter the apprehensions raised by the court following its April 3 ban.

Amicus Curiae Datar’s submissions primarily focused on the Intermediary Guidelines under the Information Technology Act. He also submitted that online speech is protected under Article 19 (1) of the Constitution. In this backdrop, he submitted that there cannot be a system where something which is statutorily permissible becomes judicially impermissible. He told the court that banning the app is not the solution and that the rights of legitimate users must be protected.

A petitioner in the case submitted that the court ban ought to continue since it was a Chinese app, and posed a threat to India.

The court, however, made it clear that it is only concerned about the protection of online users, particularly children, against cyber crime. Following the submissions, the court decided to vacate its interim order banning the app.

Content@BuzzInContent.com