PUBG Mobile is arguably among the most prominent battle royale titles around the world. The year 2020 was nothing short of a roller-coaster ride for the game as it was banned in multiple countries, including Pakistan and Afghanistan.
At the same time, it was blocked by India's Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, under section 69A of the Information Technology Act, on 2nd September 2020.
Since then, fans have been eagerly waiting for the game’s return to India. After the announcement of the Indian variant, there have been various developments regarding its comeback in the country - including teasers, a website, registering as a private limited company, and more.
Now, an RTI response has revealed that PUBG Mobile is not banned in India for public access, but that instead, it was only blocked by the Government of India under the provisions of Section 69A of the Information Technology Act, due to data security concerns.
PUBG Mobile not banned in India for public access: MeitY via alleged RTI report
The RTI was filed by GemWire on 17th December 2020, and it asked the government numerous questions about the suspension of PUBG Mobile in the country.
Here are the queries which were put forward by GemWire and response by the Central Public Information Officer(CPOI):
Will a new app (PUBG Mobile India) published by a different publisher, having no ties with China and abiding by the regulations of MEITY, be subjected to the previous ban placed on the PUBG MOBILE Nordic Map: Livik app? Note: The ban as stated was for a specific application: PUBG MOBILE Nordic Map: Livik, not PUBG as a whole entity.
This Ministry has not 'banned' for public access the PUBG Mobile Nordic Map: Livik App under the provisions of Section 69A of the Information Technology Act, 2000.
Follow up to the first question, if the ban implies to the new application on what basis would that be?
Blocking applies to a specific App only.
Is there an open dialogue taking place between MEITY and PUBG Corporation/Krafton INC.
No formal dialogue with PUBG/Krafton is held by this Ministry.
With the reply to this alleged RTI query, the dust around the legality of the other specific versions of the famous mobile battle royale title appears to be cleared. The response clearly states that blocking only applies to particular applications and not the title as a whole.