The Ministry said that the exemption is discriminatory to its Indian users and its differential treatment between European and Indian users attracted serious criticism and “betrays a lack of respect for the rights and interests of [its] citizens.”
The ministry also added that the exemption is harmful to Indian users’ interests and is looked upon with grave concern by the Indian government, who owes a “sovereign responsibility” to its citizens to ensure their interests remain uncompromised.
India’s IT Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad, tweeted a video of him stating that any digital platform is free to do business in India as long as personal privacy remains uncompromised.
WhatsApp is hugely popular in India with 400 million users and counting according to TechCrunch and Reuters. The app is so popular that the locals use the app to send court summons and notices due to the COVID-19 pandemic.