Nepal bans TikTok, implements new regulations for social media platforms

banned TikTok citing concerns over the app's adverse impact on social harmony. Nepal is also setting some ground rules for social media in the country, with a major. The government emphasised the need for these to have representatives in Nepal to address user concerns

The Nepal government has taken a decisive step to impose a ban on the popular short video-sharing app, TikTok.

The decision, made during a Cabinet meeting on Monday, cites concerns over the app's adverse impact on social harmony, as per a report by The Kathmandu Post. The specific date for the enforcement of this ban is yet to be determined.

The Nepalese government, while acknowledging the right to freedom of expression, expressed worries about TikTok's alleged promotion of hate speech, leading to criticism from a significant segment of society.

Previously, India had banned TikTok in 2020 as part of a broader prohibition on various Chinese applications. India's ban on TikTok and other Chinese apps came amid privacy and security concerns, following a violent clash at the Himalayan border. The move was a response to the tragic loss of Indian soldiers' lives in the altercation with Chinese troops.

According to the Kathmandu Post, discussions on the matter took place last week between the Cyber Bureau of the Nepal Police, the Ministry of Home Affairs, and representatives from TikTok. The ban is expected to be implemented once technical preparations are concluded.

This recent ban aligns with the Nepal government's introduction of the ‘Directives on the Operation of Social Networking 2023.' Social media platforms operating in Nepal are now required to establish offices within the country, according to the new .

In a Cabinet meeting held last Thursday, the government mandated that social media giants like Facebook, X, and YouTube must open liaison offices in Nepal. The government emphasized the need for these platforms to have representatives in Nepal to address user concerns and promptly handle objectionable content.

Companies operating these platforms must establish an office or designate a focal person in Nepal within three months of the directive's enforcement. Non-compliance with these regulations risks platform shutdowns. The directives also include a 19-point not-to-do list for users on platforms such as Facebook, X, YouTube, and Instagram.

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