Battlegrounds Mobile India Has Been Banned In India

Since July 28, Battleground Mobile India has been taken offline, and it looks like it may be a while until it returns.

GBMI
Battleground Mobile India is a localized version of PUBG: Mobile that looks to allay the security concerns of the Indian government. | © Krafton

Battleground Mobile India (BGMI) has been taken off the Google and Apple app stores, with the game seemingly facing the same fate as PlayerUnknown's Battleground Mobile (PUBG), which was banned in the country in 2020 over concerns about data sharing and mining with China.

According to a report from Reuters, the Indian government used powers it has under India's IT law to block BGMI, the same powers used to block over 100 apps, including PUBG Mobile and TikTok, back in 2020 after a prolonged border standoff between the two Asian neighbors.

The bans have since extended to over 300 apps and include rival battle royale Fire Fire, which is owned by Singapore technology group SEA.

Battleground Mobile India Banned In India

BGMI was spawned from that 2020 decision, with the game being taken back under the control of the original developers, Krafton, and not Chinese tech giant Tencent. This was meant to help alleviate the concerns of Indian officials, with Microsoft's Azure service taking over the hosting, but there is clearly still work to do as BGMI has been banned now.

On July 28, it was reported that India invoked a section of its IT law, called 69A, to impose the ban. The section allows the government to block access to content in the interest of national security. Orders issued under the section are generally confidential in nature.

That prompted Google and Apple to remove it from their app stores which they had done by the evening of July 28, though users who have already installed the game can still play it at this current time.

The secrecy of the law may mean we may never know the exact reasons for the ban or when, if ever, it will be lifted with PUBG Mobile still unplayable in the country almost two years after it was taken offline.