While a section of the public had started demanding the ban of Krafton's India-centred mobile game, Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI), even before its release, such voices seem to be growing every minute. In fact, netizens have even requested the PUBG mobile replacement to be stopped, outlining how the game is still a Chinese product disguised as a Korean one. To give a real sense of how sensitive this issue has become, #BanBattlegroundsPUBG happens to be one of the top trending hashtags on Twitter India on June 11.
Some of the social media users were also quick to point out that despite the developers of BGMI, being South Korean, it is the Chinese company Tencent Holdings that holds a major stake in the company.
Such reactions come after Ninong Ering, a Member of the Legislative Assembly in Arunachal Pradesh, had written a letter to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ban the mobile game. He even termed it as a threat to the security of the country and to the privacy of Indian citizens. This particular letter was dated May 22, 2021.
The letter was followed by another one from a Member of Parliament from Telangana, Arvind Dharmapuri, which was addressed to the IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and raised questions over the nature of the game and urged serious examination.
Notably, the Indian government had earlier banned the existing PUBG mobile, which was published by Tencent, in September 2020 after cross-border tension between neighbouring countries India and China.
The decision then led to Krafton coming up with a new game with the name Battlegrounds Mobile India to cater to the large Indian market. Although it hasn't been officially announced, the game is likely to launch on June 18 with pre-registrations already started.