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Why has Free Fire been banned in India? Probable reason revealed

The popular BR shooter by Garena has a massive following in India (Image via Sportskeeda)
The popular BR shooter by Garena has a massive following in India (Image via Sportskeeda)
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Garena Free Fire, one of the most famous battle royale mobile games, has officially been banned by the Government of India alongside 53 other apps. The shocking news has crushed the hopes of fans who were expecting the game's return to the Google Play and App Store after its initial removal.

@MDZubai47387928 Hi, Zubair, as per the Govt. directive, these apps have been banned with effect from 12th Feb for safeguarding the interests of Indian mobile and internet users. hence you are not able to use this app. Thanks, Akansha twitter.com/messages/compo…

On 12 February, Free Fire was removed from the app stores of Android and iOS, while many users started reporting login issues. Reportedly, many broadband or cellular networks stopped working for the game, and many speculated the inevitable decision to happen soon.


Deducing possible reason for Garena Free Fire's ban

The game was removed from both app stores on 12 February (Image via Garena)
The game was removed from both app stores on 12 February (Image via Garena)

The esports scene was finally recovering and seeing a rise due to Free Fire's staggering popularity. The ban has proved to be an unfortunate occurrence for the gaming scenario in India yet again. The move to ban Garena's BR shooter was unpredictable and quite sudden.

Govt of India to ban 54 Chinese apps that pose a threat to India’s security: Sources

The scale and amount of this wave of bans are similar to what happened during the infamous TikTok and PUBG Mobile bans. The reasons that the Indian Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology cited for the blockage of those applications were related to the nation's security, defense, and sovereignty.

India's Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has banned a new batch of apps, including popular battle royale game Garena Free Fire. Free Fire was the #1 mobile battle royale game in India by downloads and revenue in 2021, so this is a huge blow. twitter.com/ETNOWlive/stat…

Hence, the reason behind the recent ban of 54 apps in India should be similar. However, most blocked applications are either Chinese or were clones of previously banned apps. Therefore, blocking the popular shooter seems a bit harsh, considering Garena is a Singaporean company.

Meanwhile, Garena wishing #ValentinesDay on official Free Fire India social media... #freefireban twitter.com/gametubei/stat… https://t.co/o3o336I75s

As of now, fans are awaiting an official statement from Garena's side as the latter has kept mum amid all recent developments. Indian social media handles for the game have also not updated the users regarding the situation.

The only positive to come out of this saga is the availability of the MAX variant, which is still operable in India. Fans can download it from the Google Play Store right now, as there has been no news regarding its ban in India.


Edited by Ravi Iyer
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