The message came suddenly in Monday - 59 mostly China-linked apps are banned in India. Among them are Tiktok and Wechat, popular services with hundreds of millions of users worldwide.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government justifies the measure by threatening the apps "India's sovereignty and integrity, India's defense, the country's security and general order", reports media in Delhi. In simpler terms, they are accused of being able to act as a spy tool for the Chinese regime.

600 million

Similar suspicions have also been raised elsewhere, as in the case of US allegations against Chinese IT giant Huawei.

The measure will have immediate effects on one of the world's most important IT markets. Only Tiktok has been downloaded over 600 million times in India, making the country account for almost a third of the app's global market, according to figures from analysis firm Sensor Tower, Reuters reports.