Disappointed fans when BGMI goes offline on Play Store and App Store
Fans of the popular battle royale game Battlegrounds Mobile India (BGMI) are shocked after the game suddenly disappeared from the Google Play Store and App Store on Thursday. Aneesh Thomas, 32, who plays BGMI regularly, said he is extremely bummed about the game’s removal. “While BGMI has been removed from the app stores, I can still access it. However, the same thing happened with PUBG as well. First they removed it and after a couple of days we couldn’t play.”
As of now, it is unclear why the government ordered the game to be removed. “We are clarifying how BGMI was removed from the Google Play store and App store and will let you know once we get specific information,” Krafton said in a statement. However, Google, in removing the app from its store, cited the government’s request to remove the game.
BGMI fans want the Indian government to reinstate the game in the country and seek a reasonable explanation for its abrupt removal. “The sudden removal likely points to a blanket ban. This decision will only harm the gaming ecosystem,” Pranav Punalia, founder of gaming community OpraahFX told indianexpress.com. He said that both Freefire and BGMI, the best games played in the country, were similarly removed. “There is a multi-million dollar economy that revolves around these games, there are operators that are associated with that. So banning it doesn’t make sense to me.”
It should be noted that BGMI is the new avatar for PUBG Mobile, exclusively made for Indian gamers. PUBG Mobile is owned by Tencent, while BGMI has been developed by the South Korean publisher Krafton. It was released on July 2, 2021 for Android devices and August 18, 2021 for iOS devices, after the government banned PUBG and other Chinese apps due to national security concerns.
YouTube streamer Abhay Singh, also known as Thugboimax, is confused by the government’s request to remove the game. “Even though the developers changed the server location and game items, in accordance with government regulations, this still happened. I think this is absolutely wrong and will affect online game streamers like myself who rely on BGMI for their bread and butter.”
Meanwhile, some believe that BGMI has been in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons and that this should happen. “With the recent incident of a boy killing his mother over a BGMI argument, the game came back under the government’s radar and marked it as unsafe for young adults,” said Rohit Agarwal, founder and director of Alpha Zegus. , a marketing agency specializing in the gaming and lifestyle domains.
The reason for banning the app is not obvious. “The confidentiality clause in the blocking rules prevents intermediaries from communicating about this as well, which is against the law of natural justice. It is time to review the confidentiality provision of the blocking rules,” said Prasanth Sugathan, legal director of SFLC.in.
Just four weeks ago, BGMI surpassed 100 million users in India, as the game marked one year in the country.