As India and China complete 4th round of Commander-level talks on 'de-escalation and total disengagement', India is also scrutinising several Chinese companies involved and invested in the Indian market on financing, data security, funds, parent company, harvesting data of Indians etc. While India has banned 59 Chinese applications over data security concerns, government sources reveal on Saturday, that there are several Chinese companies with links to China's People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and are operational in India. Sources name companies like - Xindia Steels Ltd, China Electronics Technology Group Corporation (CETC), Huawei, with direct/indirect links with the PLA, while companies like Alibaba, Tencent, SAIC Motor Corporation Limited are involved in joint ventures with the PLA.
As per a Chinese law passed in June 2017, the Jinping government has the powers to monitor suspects, raid premises and seize vehicles and devices - which requires Huawei, ZTE, Tik Tok etc to support in China’s national intelligence work, wherever they operate, states the Annual report of the US Secretary of Defense to the Congress. This has risen security questions on companies like Xindia Steels, CETC and Huawei, as per government sources. All these companies have set up major manufacturing companies in different parts of India.
Apart from these companies, China has its military-civil fusion policy which 'aims to spur innovation and economic growth through an array of policies and other government-supported mechanisms, including venture capital (VC) funds, while leveraging the fruits of civilian innovation for China’s defense sector', as stated a report by the United States-China Economic and Security Review Commission. In this sector, several companies like Alibaba, Tencent and SAIC are involved as Venture capitalists in multiple Indian start-ups. While Alibaba and Tencent comprise the majority of China's Artificial intelligence network, SAIC is a major automotive firm. Here are some of these companies' investment in Indian start-ups:
After banning 59 Chinese applications in India over 'security concerns', the Centre has posed 79 questions to the apps on varying topics including financing, data security, funds, parent company, harvesting data of Indians on July 10. These companies which include TikTok, Helo, and Xiaomi have been given 3 weeks' time to answer these questions. Several companies have sought a meeting with the Information & Broadcast (I&B) Ministry to explain their business and data management.
On 29 June, the Home Ministry banned 59 Chinese Apps including Tik-Tok. The Centre has stated that it has received many complaints from various sources including several reports about the misuse of these apps for stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorized manner to servers that have locations outside India.
Hence, in a move to protect the sovereignty of Indian Cyberspace and to ensure the interests of crores of Indian mobile users, the government has stated that this was a major blow to China’s Digital Silk Route ambitions. Meanwhile, both India and China are committed to 'disengage and de-escalate' along the LAC after the Galwan clashes where 20 Indian soldiers were martyred.