India downloads a lot of apps, uploads very few, says Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad at YourStory's Digital India townhall

This is the moment for Indian apps to shine, said Union Minister Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad said during YourStory's Digital India townhall

India is a country where apps are downloaded a lot, but not uploaded, said Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Minister for Communications, Electronics & Information Technology, and Law & Justice, at YourStory's 'Digital India' Townhall on Wednesday.

The minister emphasised that Indian startups have a golden opportunity now to fill the vacuum for homegrown apps following the government's decision to ban 59 Chinese mobile apps.

"India me app download bahut hota hai. India me upload nahi hota. But I'm confident Indian startups can do it. We have the capability and I appeal to startups to make this happen," the minister said.

Union Minister Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad in conversation with tech entrepreneurs on YourStory's Digital India Town Hall

Indian tech startups, which have been jubilant since Monday, said the ban on Chinese apps marked a new phase for 'swadeshi' apps, and was in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for a 'Aatmanirbhar' India.

The decision to ban the apps was prompted by recent clashes between Indian and Chinese troops along the border, and more importantly, after several complaints and reports that the apps had been stealing user data and surreptitiously sending it to servers outside India.

Homegrown apps such as Chingari, Trell, and Kaagaz Scanner have been seeing a surge in the number of users overnight since the ban was announced, while other companies have urged the government to strengthen the country's data privacy laws.

Speaking at the virtual session, Naveen Tewari, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, InMobi, said:

"The Indian digital sector, in the last 48 hours, has moved from being a child to being an adult."

Last year, InMobi acquired Roposo, a short video platform. After the ban was announced, Naveen had tweeted saying the platform was seeing two million users on the app, every hour.

At the townhall, the Cabinet Minister also called on the startup ecosystem to focus on building solutions for digital education and healthtech.

Edited by Megha Reddy


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