304 North Cardinal St.
Dorchester Center, MA 02124
The reason behind the ban on the game with more than 100 million users in India was not immediately clear
Alphabet Inc’s Google on Thursday blocked access to a popular battle-royale game from South Korean developer Krafton, citing an Indian government order.
The US tech giant said in a statement that the Indian government has ordered a ban on Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI) and forced it to remove the app from its Play Store.
According to the game’s website, it had more than 100 million users in India. The blocking comes after another Krafton title, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG), was banned in India in 2020.
“After receiving the order, we notified the affected developer following the process in place and blocked access to the app,” a Google spokesperson said.
BGMI was also unavailable on Apple Inc’s App Store on Thursday night in India.
The reason for blocking the game was not immediately clear.
Krafton, local representatives for Apple and India’s IT ministry did not immediately respond to requests for comment outside regular business hours.
A source with direct knowledge of the matter said Google received a government takedown order within the last 24 hours.
Indian authorities cited security risks in banning PUBG, but the move was widely seen as a result of deteriorating trade relations between India and China. At the time, Chinese company Tencent owned the publishing rights for PUBG in India.
The crackdown was part of a wider ban by New Delhi of more than 100 mobile apps of Chinese origin following a months-long border dispute between the nuclear-armed rivals.
The ban has since been extended to more than 300 apps.