India Blocks 14 Mobile Apps Used By Terrorists in Pakistan to Send Information to Kashmir

India has banned 14 mobile messaging applications as part of a major crackdown on terrorism, according to sources.

According to media reports, terror groups allegedly used these applications, primarily in Jammu and Kashmir, to communicate with their supporters and Over Ground Workers (OGW) and to receive orders from Pakistan.

Applications like Crypviser, Enigma, Safeswiss, Wickrme, Mediafire, Briar, BChat, Nandbox, Conion, IMO, Element, Second Line, Zangi, and Threema are prohibited.

According to ANI, the intelligence agencies have alerted higher-ups in official communications that these apps are spreading terrorist propaganda in Jammu and Kashmir. 

The government has taken enforcement action against mobile applications that endanger the country’s security.

The Indian government previously prohibited numerous Chinese apps because they threatened the country’s security, sovereignty, defence, and the rule of law and public order.

How Android smartphones are set for these big changes in India

After being slapped with an antitrust order from the Competition Commission of India (CCI), Google was forced to make some changes to the Android platform, which could significantly change Android smartphones in India. While the changes were notified earlier, a tipster has now come across an internal document that shows exactly how the Android smartphones in India may differ from the rest of the world.
As per the document seen by the informant Kuba Wojciechowski, India shall obtain a variant of Google Mobile Services (GMS) with non-mandatory Google Apps.
To begin with, smartphone manufacturers will be granted the option to select the Indian Mobile Application Distribution Agreements (IMADA) or the conventional MADA, which is utilised in other markets.
Opting for IMADA (Indian Mobile Application Distribution Agreement) entails a restriction on the sale of such smartphones solely within the confines of India. The selection of IMADA appears to be discretionary, unlike the obligatory regulations observed in other MADA agreements for different nations, such as EMADA for Europe or TMADA for Turkey, amongst others.
The conventional agreement necessitates the inclusion of 11 critical Google applications, whereas IMADA solely mandates the installation of the Google Play Store. Interestingly, the document notes that Google will offer “per-app bounty” to OEMs if they choose to install these 11 apps. Also, OEMs can choose to pre-load any third-party apps whatsoever.
Furthermore, IMADA does not compel OEMs to include a Google search bar, Google folder, or the Play Store icon on the home screen. And Indian users shall be free to elect their preferred default search engine.
What else is changing for Android smartphones in India
Apart from all the changes coming to Android in India, Google will allow its partners to build forked versions of Android. Also, developers can choose an alternative billing system. Furthermore, some changes are being made to sideloading in Android, and Google plans to inform users about the risks of sideloading.

healthcare: Mobile application comes in handy for healthcare workers as India chases target to reduce tuberculosis burden by 2025

A mobile application is helping bridge the gap in knowledge regarding tuberculosis for thousands of healthcare workers as the Central government strives to achieve its ambitious target to reduce the TB burden by 2025. After its initial launch in January 2022, the “Ni-kshay Setu” app has helped over 17,000 frontline healthcare workers and other staff at the district, state and national levels to gain knowledge regarding various aspects of the disease, including diagnosis, treatment, and assessment of their training through digital modules, according to officials.

As per the World Health Organisation (WHO), the total number of incident TB patients (new and relapse) in 2021 in India was 19,33,381, a 19 per cent rise compared to the previous year.

The Union government has set the aim to strategically reduce the TB burden in the country by 2025, five years ahead of the Sustainable Development Goals, under its National Tuberculosis Elimination Programme (NTEP).

“The Ni-kshay Setu application aims to boost the ability of healthcare workers to treat the patients by helping reduce the knowledge gap regarding the disease,” said Dr Harsh Shah, national coordinator of the TB project at the Gandhinagar-based Indian Institute of Public Health (IIPH) which developed it.

Since the launch of the second and updated version of the app earlier this month, it is attracting nearly a thousand users per week, Shah told PTI.

He said the number of additions keeps growing as the app expands its base to serve the requirements of healthcare workers across 35 states and Union Territories.

The need for the app was first felt after a survey covering 460 healthcare workers, more than 900 TB patients, frontline workers, state and district TB officials and private doctors etc. in Gujarat and Jharkhand revealed gaps in their knowledge regarding the bacterial disease. “The knowledge assessment showed the gaps ranging from 20-45 per cent among different cadres. Knowledge on patient management and new case findings were the lowest scoring among all interviewed sections,” Shah said.

He said the “Ni-kshay Setu” helps users to assess presumptive TB patients as per their details and symptoms and provides decision-making algorithms to arrive at their diagnosis and treatment regimen.

“It also provides a geospatial mapping of health facilities along with the availability of services. There is also an interactive artificial intelligence (AI)-based chatbot to answer queries of users. This app is available in multiple languages with choice-based learning and real-time patient-centric care,” Shah said.

Additional Director of the Gujarat State TB Training and Demonstration Centre, Dr Pankaj Nimavat said the app is particularly good regarding diagnosis and treatment of the disease.

“Healthcare workers get to know where to refer the patients in case they suffer from adverse drug reactions and how to deal with the case,” Nimavat said.

He said the app is also helping in capacity building for healthcare workers as part of the government’s “End TB Strategy” by assessing workers and providing the facility for in-built tests before and after their training.

As per the WHO’s Global TB Report 2021, the estimated incidence of all forms of TB in India in 2020 was 188 per 100,000 population and the total number of incident TB patients (new and relapse) during 2021 was 19,33,381.

How Neobanks Can Leverage 5G To Digitalise Rural India

Fintech in India today possesses the potential to bring about a digital transformation in the furthest corners of rural India

Neobanks are bridging the gap by making banking services more accessible to people in remote areas

Emerging fintechs and neobanks should begin to look into developing strategies for utilising the 5G network to serve the remote customer base in India

With technological progress, the financial ecosystem has become highly digital. Mobile devices have become an inseparable part of day-to-day life. Today, mobile devices with 5G technology are capable of performing a variety of tasks that were once possible only, if at all, on a personal computer. 

However, the digital revolution in India is largely led by the urban population. Rural areas have been lagging behind in terms of digital penetration. Relatively speaking, the internet is still an experience enjoyed primarily in urban areas due to poor connectivity in the rural part of India.  

5G has the potential to solve this challenge when the infrastructure is in place. Fintech in India today possesses the potential to bring about a digital transformation in the furthest corners of rural India, similar to what the rest of the country has seen in the past couple of decades.

Why 5G For Rural Areas? 

5G is different from 4G in terms of speed, capacity, and latency. It will be much faster than 4G, with a speed of up to 10 gigabits per second. It will also have greater capacity, meaning that more devices can be connected to the network at the same time. Finally, it will have much lower latency, meaning that there will be minimal delay in communication.

5G will help rural areas in terms of finances by providing them with access to high-speed internet. This will allow businesses to connect to customers in rural parts of India. In addition, 5G will allow for the development of new applications and services that can be used by businesses in rural areas. 

Due to the lack of internet penetration in tier III and tier IV towns, there is a lack of awareness amongst the rural dwellers about the convenience that technology enables for financial services such as getting a loan in a few clicks or paying electricity bills through UPI apps. 

With access to high-speed internet, digital financial service providers will explore opportunities to bring the next billion people into the digital ecosystem and hence make economical benefits in the process.

This will naturally lead to a greater extent of financial inclusion since it will serve the underbanked and unbanked population of India.

Another benefit of 5G deployment in rural areas is its transmission in long-range, low-bandwidth frequencies.  The high end of this spectrum will result in a raging download speed, fast enough to transfer video of 1 GB within a minute. This increase in video streaming speed can be used by fintechs in doing video KYC verification as most rural dwellers may not have digital copies of all their documents. 

This network will allow a higher density of mobile broadband connections and will process high volumes of data per unit of time. Most importantly 5G can download the same data in a fraction of the time 4G can which is a big use case for rural areas where power cuts are common. All these factors will contribute to lowering the cost of data and hence greater adoption. 

As for businesses, 5G will make it easier to access cloud services thus enabling faster development of fintech products. This increase in speed will also minimise the wait time taken by the banking applications to perform complex processes such as ID verification, customer onboarding, and transaction tracking.

How Neobanks Are Bridging The Gap 

Neobanks are digital alternatives to traditional branch-based banks. With the advent of the Digital India movement, urban millennials have gotten used to doing all their banking activities via mobile applications. Whether it be a small businessman migrating from a physical khata to a mobile app to maintain a ledger, or a student sending money abroad for education fees; most things are possible via mobile applications.

The story of rural India’s banking is different than that of urban India. There is a limitation in accessibility in remote areas as banks don’t find it economically viable to set up branches in remote regions. With the emergence of 5G, a wide range of products and services will become available to regions with sparse populations, thanks to better unit economics in operating digital platforms vis-a-vis physical branches.  

According to a survey by Gaon Connection, loan schemes don’t reach more than 60% of the rural population. One of the biggest reasons rural dwellers aren’t able to get business loans when needed is that they do not have a savings account. 

Most rural populace prefers keeping all their savings at their home as most times they have difficulty accessing a bank branch. At the same time banks typically require collateral in the form of a savings account before they will give out a loan. Without a savings account, villagers are not able to get loans to start or expand their businesses. 

This lack of access to capital is one of the biggest reasons why poverty is so prevalent in rural areas. Neobanks are changing this by providing banking services to villages and small towns digitally and by not being tied to traditional brick-and-mortar banking infrastructure. 

This means that they can offer banking services in areas where the penetration of physical banks is low due to the higher cost of operation. The catalyst for this transformation will be 5G which can be used by the rural population to easily access banking services via fintech mobile applications. 

Way Forward

Neobanks are bridging the gap between villages and cities by making banking services more accessible to people in remote areas. By doing so, they are empowering people in these communities to participate in the formal economy and to access financial services that can help them to improve their lives. 

The emergence of 5G will give birth to many possibilities for the inclusion of rural communities in the fintech market. Though it is hard to say exactly when 5G will be available everywhere in India, the deployment of the 5G mobile network has already started.  Emerging fintechs and neobanks should begin to look into developing strategies for utilising the 5G network to serve the remote customer base in India.

Top 10 Most Trusted Android App Development Companies in Ahmedabad, India 2022-2023

As exciting as it may sound, developing a mobile application is also a long and creepy journey where you must stay vigilant throughout your journey. But, imagine if you get the support of one such partner who takes care of your idea thoroughly and helps you bring it to reality flawlessly. Then, it can surely make your journey smooth and straightforward. Developing a mobile application can streamline various mundane operations of your organization while smoothing the internal process and management. But, along with the thought of a mobile application development comes the question lurking behind- For which platform? If this question keeps your mind busy, let us compare some data between Android and iOS. No doubt the data keeps changing year by year and varies per country; in India, Android grips over 97% market share, making it a clear winner for increasing opportunities to get an edge over your competitors. 

This may have cleared your doubt about which mobile platform to select for your mobile application development. In addition, several mobile application development companies in India offer custom android application development solutions that help you reach your goals quickly. However, it is indeed a daunting task to select the best android app development company in India; thus, we have shortlisted a few of them here for your ease. We have chosen these companies skimming many data and statistics like reviews and feedback, several effective deliveries of applications, comparing the portfolios, comparing their expertise and cost, and prosperous clientele, which will help you to hire an android app developer. Select a reputed android app development agency to ensure a successful application to beat the competition.

1.    ManekTech

ManekTech is a reputed Android app development company in Ahmedabad, India, that ensures high-quality android application development services that help your business grow tremendously. It leverages a full stack of Android-related technologies to develop feature-rich applications. It has a team of Android app developers who keep themselves abreast with the latest technology advancements implementing them best to the client’s requirements.

ManekTech offers many other software and mobile app development solutions as a reputed IT consultancy, along with android app development services. Having been in the industry for more than 11 years, it has a global presence with staff in India, Germany, and the USA. It has added many reputed companies to its clientele with scalable web solutions, effective communication, and minimal turnaround time. Connect with this firm, if you are looking to hire quality android app developers.

2.    iMOBDEV Technologies

It is among the most trusted offshore software development companies that offer various solutions for Maintenance, Product Development & Support, Application Migration & Re-engineering, Enterprise Solutions, Web Development, Game Development, Mobile Application Development Solutions, and more. 

3.    icoderz solutions Pvt ltd

It is a renowned organization that offers mobile and web development solutions across the globe, having offices in various countries. With a team of expert technocrats, the company ensures client satisfaction with a quick turnaround time.

4.    Openxcell

Delivering custom web and mobile solutions worldwide, the company has an offshore center in India with skilled software developers, designers, testers, and project managers. In addition, it offers complete support for mobile app development, from conceptualization to app maintenance. 

5.    NectarBits

Leveraging the power of the latest technologiesNectarBits offers comprehensive solutions for mobile and web technologies, cloud computing, database management, and UX/UI design. 

6.    MindInventory

Promoting it as an eminent Web and Mobile App Development Company globally, MindInventory is a first choice for many clients worldwide. Delivering various solutions in lots of industries, it has a rich portfolio to swear by.

7.    Peerbits

Being a software engineering enterprise, Peerbits offers top-notch technology solutions for Web and Mobile application development. It helps small to large organizations to achieve their goals with the help of technologies.


When all businesses are shifting their focus highly on digitalization, SPEC INDIA helps them by leveraging the latest technology solutions. From custom software development to enterprise mobility, SPEC INDIA offers unmatched solutions for all clients’ web and mobile needs. 

9.    Techcronus

Having offices in multiple countries, Techcronus provides global IT Solutions offering custom software development and mobile app development solutions to all industry verticals. With a pool of expert technocrats, it ensures quality solutions to all clients.

10.    intuz

Intuz is a well-known IT company that designs, builds, and delivers excellent digital products. With a skilled pool of developers, it offers innovative custom web and mobile solutions and IoT and digital solutions, helping clients achieve new horizons.


Payment Aggregators in India Have Until Sept.30 for License Application

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has extended the license application window for payment aggregators that were in existence as of March 17, 2020. These entities can now apply for a license seeking authorization from the RBI by September 30, 2022. To be eligible, the payment aggregators should have had a minimum net worth of INR 150 million as of March 31, 2022. The timeline for payment aggregators to achieve net worth of INR 250 million by March 31, 2023 remains unchanged.

As per a notification dated July 28, 2022, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has extended the license application window for online non-bank payment aggregators till September 30, 2022.

Previously, all payment aggregators – as existing on March 17, 2020 – were required to apply to the RBI by September 30, 2021 – for seeking authorization under the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007 (PSS Act). However, the application window was extended by a year due to the disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

So far, several payment providers like Razorpay, Pine Labs, Stripe, 1Pay, and Innoviti Payments have received in-principle (provisional) approval from the RBI for a payment aggregators license.

Who are payment aggregators?

Payment aggregators are intermediaries that facilitate payments in online commercial transactions. These entities enable e-commerce websites, mobile apps, and merchants to accept various payment instruments from customers for completion of their payment obligations – without the need for merchants to create a separate payment integration system of their own.

The payment aggregators receive payments from the customers buying online, and subsequently pool and transfer these payments to the merchants after a specific time period.

What are India’s regulatory guidelines for payment aggregators?

In 2020, the RBI released the Guidelines on Regulation of Payment Aggregators and Payment Gateways, which mandated that only the companies approved by the regulator would be allowed to acquire and offer payment services to merchants.

The RBI has prescribed various eligibility criteria for payment aggregators to be able to apply for a license, including the minimum net worth requirement. The guidelines also mandate that all payment aggregators must comply with the rules and adopt the technology-related recommendations made by the RBI.

The guidelines also govern all domestic import and export related payments facilitated by payment aggregators.

To be noted, these guidelines are not applicable to the Cash on Delivery (CoD) e-commerce model.

Authorization process

Entities seeking authorization as payment aggregator from the RBI under the PSS Act, shall apply in Form A to the Department of Payment and Settlement Systems (DPSS), RBI, Central Office, Mumbai, on or before September 30, 2022.

Entities regulated by any of the financial sector regulators shall submit a ‘No Objection Certificate’ from their respective regulator alongside their application, within 45 days of obtaining such a clearance.

Eligibility requirement for license to operate as payment aggregator

The payment aggregator applying to the RBI for a license must be a company incorporated in India under the Companies Act, 1956/2013 and the Memorandum of Association (MoA) of the applicant entity must cover the proposed activity of operating as a payment aggregator.

The RBI guidelines state that such payment aggregators shall be allowed to continue their operations till they receive communication from RBI regarding the status of their application.

According to reports, almost 180 applications have been received till date, of which many have been approved while some have been rejected.

Capital requirements

Payment aggregators should have a minimum net worth of INR 150 million as of March 31, 2022 and a net worth of INR 250 million by the end of March 31, 2023. The net-worth of INR 250 million shall be maintained at all times thereafter. Payment aggregators that are not able to comply with the net-worth requirement within the stipulated time frame shall wind-up their payment aggregation business. The banks maintaining nodal / escrow accounts of such entities shall monitor and report compliance in this regard.

The net-worth shall consist of paid-up equity capital, preference shares that are compulsorily convertible to equity, free reserves, balance in share premium account and capital reserves representing surplus arising out of sale proceeds of assets but not reserves created by revaluation of assets adjusted for accumulated loss balance, book value of intangible assets and deferred revenue expenditure, if any. The compulsorily convertible preference shares can be either non-cumulative or cumulative, and they should be compulsorily convertible into equity shares and the shareholder agreements should specifically prohibit any withdrawal of this preference capital at any time.

The payment aggregators must submit a certificate in the enclosed format from their Chartered Accountants to provide evidence of compliance with the applicable net-worth requirement while submitting their application for authorization. Newly incorporated non-bank entities that may not have an audited statement of financial accounts shall submit a certificate in the enclosed format from their Chartered Accountants regarding the current net-worth along with provisional balance sheet.

About Us

India Briefing is produced by Dezan Shira & Associates. The firm assists foreign investors throughout Asia from offices across the world, including in Delhi and Mumbai. Readers may write to [email protected] for more support on doing business in in India.

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India blocks 348 mobile apps, some Chinese, for data sourcing, profiling

Minister of State in Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar said that the apps were also transferring data outside India and was thus was infringing on sovereignty and security of the State

August 03, 2022 / 01:42 PM IST

Union Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Rajeev Chandrasekhar

Union Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Rajeev Chandrasekhar

The government has identified and blocked 348 mobile applications developed by various countries, including China, for allegedly collecting user information for profiling citizens and transmitting it overseas in an unauthorised manner.

Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar made the declaration in the Lok Sabha in response to a question by BJP’s Rodmal Nagar.

“These 348 mobile applications were collecting users’ information and transmitting it in an unauthorised manner to servers located outside the country for profiling,” Chandrasekhar said.

Based on the request from the MHA, the Ministry of Electronics and

Information Technology (MeitY) has blocked those 348 mobile applications since such data transmissions infringes the sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India and security of the state,” he said.

On being asked whether all these apps are developed by China, Chandrasekhar said, “These apps are developed by various countries including China.”

This comes a few days after Google suspended Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI), a popular battle royale game from South Korea’s gaming giant Krafton, from its Play Store. Google had said that it had received an order from the government in this regard and thus blocked access to the app.

In September 2020, Krafton’s PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) was banned in along with 117 other China-linked apps, citing data security concerns.

Earlier in the year, it was also reported that battle royale game Free Fire was banned along with 53 other China-linked apps under section 69A of the Information Technology Act on February 14, citing security concerns.

I&B ministry takes down apps, social media accounts linked to Sikhs for Justice | Latest News India

NEW DELHI: The ministry of information and broadcasting on Tuesday took down several mobile applications, social media accounts and websites of foreign-based news outlet Punjab Politics TV for having links with proscribed organisation Sikhs for Justice (SFJ), after reviewing “intelligence inputs that the channel was attempting to use online media to disturb public order during the ongoing state assembly elections”.

“The ministry of information and broadcasting has ordered blocking of apps, website, and social media accounts of foreign-based Punjab Politics TV for having close links with Sikhs For Justice, an organisation that has been declared unlawful under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 (UAPA),” the ministry said.

The statement added that the contents of the blocked apps, website, and social media accounts had the “potential to incite communal disharmony and separatism”.

“[They] were found to be detrimental to the sovereignty and integrity of India, security of the state, and public order. It was also observed that the launch of new apps and social media accounts was timed to gain traction during the ongoing elections,” it said.

US-based SFJ leader Gurpatwant Singh Pannun is already under the scanner in multiple cases of radicalisation of Sikh youths for the purpose of reviving militancy in Punjab and the creation of Khalistan under the banner – ‘Punjab Referendum 2020 for Khalistan’ – apart from organising demonstrations and on-ground campaigns outside Indian high commissions in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Germany and other countries.

He has already been declared as an “individual terrorist” under the fourth schedule of UAPA, and his properties in Punjab have been attached.

A chargesheet filed by the NIA in December 2020 against Pannun, UK-based Paramjit Singh Pamma and Canada-based Hardeep Singh Nijjar stated that SFJ, floated in the garb of ‘Human Rights advocacy group’ with its offices in various foreign countries such as the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, etc., is a frontal organisation of Khalistani terrorist groups operating from foreign soil, including Pakistan.