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TikTok returns to App Store in India following week-long ban

Popular Chinese video sharing app TikTok is again available on India's app stores, ending a week-long, court-ordered ban that restricted downloads of the title in its largest growth market.




After hearing a plea from TikTok developer Bytedance on Wednesday, the state court in Tamil Nadu reversed its decision to ban the app from both Apple's App Store and the Google Play Store, reports Reuters.

Word of the reversal arrived from lawyer K. Neelamegam, whose client initially pushed for the app's removal in a public interest filing. The unnamed individual does not plan to appeal the court's ruling, the report said.

A senior government official told Reuters that the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) would ask Apple and Google to reinstate the app after it received the court order.

"We are grateful for the opportunity to continue serving our users better," a ByteDance spokesman said.

TikTok was pulled from the App Store last week at the behest of MeitY, a move that ByteDance claimed resulted in losses of up to $500,000 a day.

In early April, the Madras High Court ordered TikTok's ban on grounds that it encouraged pornography and could expose children to sexual predators. ByteDance requested a stay, but that motion was denied by India's Supreme Court last week. The app was consequently stricken from the country's app stores on April 16.

India is a major growth market for TikTok. The app gained 188 million new users globally last quarter, 88.6 million of whom were based in India. The country accounts for about 40 percent of the app's 500 million worldwide users.