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Indian startups with Chinese funding and Chinese smartphone makers are actively touting their Indian-ness to users as they seek to address a growing wave of nationalism following a deadly border clash between the two countries earlier this month.
A skirmish between India and China at a disputed Himalayan border site left 20 Indian soldiers dead, adding to anti-China sentiments brewing since the coronavirus pandemic began.
Traders have since made calls to boycott Chinese goods, New Delhi has delayed Chinese imports at ports and on Monday, in its strongest move yet, India banned nearly five dozen Chinese apps including TikTok. The technology ministry said the apps were a threat to India’s sovereignty and security.
Companies such as digital payments firm Paytm, whose parent One97 Communications is roughly 40% owned by Alibaba, were quick to praise the move.
Its founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma on Twitter called the ban a “bold step in the national interest”, adding that it was “time for the best Indian entrepreneurs to come forward and build the best by Indians, for Indians!”
Sharma has often previously posted pictures of himself with Alibaba founder Jack Ma on social media.
China on Tuesday said India’s move to ban the apps could be …
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