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Indian-UK Teenage Girl Develops Desi Version of TikTok, Names it 'Theek-Thaak'

Representative Image.

Representative Image.

Theek-Thaak app aims to provide a bigger platform to regional artists from the country to show the India's 'diverse traditions and culture' abroad.

A young Indian girl based in United Kingdom has developed a video sharing app, Theek-Thaak, similar to that of China developed TikTok citing 'lack of diverse Indian culture representation'.

17-year-old Saina Sodhi said, "TikTok is a very powerful social networking site, but I feel it needs an Indian version of the application." The app was named assuming what would TikTok be called if it was developed and launched in India.

The app's theme colour comes in green, white and orange, an ode to India's national flag. The app aims to provide a bigger platform to regional artists from the country to show the nation's 'diverse traditions and culture' abroad.

The logo of the app resembles the 'OK' symbol, which also means theek thaak in Hindi language.

The basic model for the app was first created in January last year, following which the actual work began. By November, the first model was prepared.

Having no corporate lawyer to help herself with the terms and policies, Sodhi drafted the entire terms and conditions along with policies by herself. Later, she did manage to get the support of a corporate lawyer, who happened to be a relative.

The app is slated tp launch by the end of March this year, and currently it's available in eight Indian languages including Tamil and Gujarati.

However, being an amateur in the field of coding and developing an app, Sodhi shared her experience of developing the Indian app with her "rudimentary understanding of coding". She eventually sought the help of a women-centric development group and went ahead to set up her own eponymous company, the Saina Corporation, and even got a GST number for it. However, being a minor she appointed her mother as the proprietor.

The app comes at time, when the Indian government has been banning several popular Chinese apps, including popular video-sharing app TikTok since June 2020. In June, it banned 59 Chinese apps.

Recently China said that the Indian government's decision to keep a ban on 59 Chinese apps was a violation of the World Trade Organization's fair rules of business and would hurt Chinese firms.

The ban dates from last year when political tension between the neighbours rose over their disputed border. In January the Indian government decided to keep the ban on TikTok and other apps.

"We urge the Indian side to immediately correct its discriminatory measures and avoid causing further damage to bilateral cooperation," Chinese embassy spokesperson Ji Rong said in a statement, reports Reuters.

( with inputs from Reuters )

first published:February 11, 2021, 08:00 IST