PM Modi hits delete on his Weibo account after banning it in India. It isn’t easy



Prime Minister Narendra Modi has deleted his posts on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like account after India decided to ban 59 mobile applications linked to China. New Delhi had initially tried to delete PM Modi’s account but it turned out that the Chinese social media platform had a “complex procedure” for VIP accounts, people familiar with the development said.

The government has initiated the process for deletion of the account. “For reasons best known to the Chinese, there was great delay in granting this basic permission,” a government functionary said.

As an interim measure, the Prime Minister’s Office decided to remove its posts from the platform. PM Modi made his debut on the Chinese social media in 2015.

“PM Modi had 115 posts on Weibo. It was decided to manually delete them and after much effort, 113 posts were removed,” news agency ANI added, quoting sources.

The government had on Monday ordered the ban on the 59 mobile apps after an assessment that “they are engaged in activities which is prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, the security of the state and public order”.

The move, which many analysts say, could become the template for other countries to act against Chinese companies, have angered Beijing. In a statement last evening, China claimed that the ban selectively and discriminatorily targets Chinese apps on ambiguous and far-fetched grounds and abuses national security exceptions.

Back home, China has for years banned internet websites that it felt could hurt its national security. Beijing does not allow its nationals to access sites such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

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