Krafton, a South Korean giant made a big announcement today, that it has secured the approval from the Indian authorities to resume operations of the Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI) video game. As per the reports, it has been stated that the video (mobile) game will be made available for download in the South Asian market "soon" (no specific timeline disclosed).
IANS further reported that Rajeev Chandrasekhar, the Minister of State for Electronics and IT has clarified that the final decision to allow the video game BGMI to return to the country will only be taken. The minister stated that the Indian government will keep a close watch on other issues of user harm, addiction, and more in the upcoming months (3 trial months) before a final decision of making the game legal for the community.
Rajeev Chandrasekhar said, "This is a three-month trial approval of BGMI after it has complied with issues of server locations and data security, etc."
In a statement, Sean Hyunil Sohn, CEO of Krafton India, said, "We are highly grateful to the Indian authorities for allowing us to resume operations of Battlegrounds Mobile India. We would like to extend our gratitude to our Indian gaming community for their support and patience over the past few months,".
He further added, "We are excited to announce that Battlegrounds Mobile India will be available for download soon and we cannot wait to welcome you back to our platform. We are committed to delivering exceptional products and services to our users in India and beyond, and we look forward to continuing our journey with you.”
Less than two years after the Indian government's ban on Krafton's popular game PUBG in the country, this latest move unfolds. Under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act, 2000, the Indian government prohibited PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG) Mobile, along with 117 Chinese applications, in September 2020, citing concerns over India's sovereignty, integrity, and defence.
At the time of the ban, PUBG had amassed an impressive user base of nearly 33 million in India, experiencing rapid growth.
The month of November 2020 marked the first revelation of PUBG Mobile's relaunch in India under the new name 'PUBG Mobile India'.
During that same month, PUBG Studios and Krafton, a video game company based in South Korea, registered PUBG India Private Ltd with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs, indicating their intention to revive PUBG Mobile in India.
After the announcement by Krafton in May 2021, the BGMI game was officially launched on July 2 for Android devices and later on August 18 for iOS devices. Within just one year, BGMI achieved an impressive milestone by surpassing 100 million registered users.
Subsequently, the Indian government directed Google and Apple to prohibit the BGMI gaming app from their respective online stores.
In accordance with Section 69A of the Information Technology Act of 2000, Google and Apple removed the highly popular battle royale game BGMI from their respective app stores.
According to the non-profit organization Prahar, BGMI was deemed no different from its predecessor PUBG, as it was believed to "endanger India's sovereignty, integrity, defence, state security, and public order."
Inputs from IANS