PUBG or PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds has run into more trouble with law enforcement authorities in India than it would care for. And this time, it is Rajkot Police that has called for a ban on the viral south Korean mobile battle game.
Various state governments on multiple occasions have expressed their views around the game calling it a ‘demon’ and a source of addiction that is rotting youngsters’ minds.
Now, Rajkot Police has banned the online multi-player game, citing it to be "addictive" and harmful for children. According to a notification issued by Rajkot Police Commissioner Manoj Agrawal on Monday, the new ban will be implemented from March 9 till April 30.
Once implemented, anyone could report an instance of someone playing PUBG and the latter may face prosecution under the Central Government Act under Section 188. A similar notification has been issued against the viral 'Momo Challenge', a viral hoax challenge in which an unknown stranger allegedly entices users to indulge in harmful, even fatal acts.
The ban comes a month after PUBG, created and distributed by a subsidiary of the South Korean gaming company 'Bluehole', celebrated a year of its release. In the last year, the game has achieved viral popularity across the world, especially in India.
However, with lakhs of users from India, the game has in the past six months, faced severe criticism from state administrations as well as as parents for having adverse, addictive and obsessive effects on regular players. A concerned mother even complained to Prime Minister Narendra Modi about her child's addiction to the game during the recent Pariksha Pe Charcha 2.0 session.
Apart from concerned parents, administrations have also expressed concern against the game. A Goa minister recently referred to the game as a 'demon' in every house. Calls were also made to ban the game in Jammu after a fitness tariner from the state allegedly lost his mind due PUBG.
It is noteworthy that in earlier this year, Surat became the first city to ban PUBG. A notification from the Commissioner's Office has been published in this regard and is set to come into effect on 15th March. In fact, on January 23, the Gujarat government had written to the Centre, seeking a complete ban on the game app.
In light of growing complaints, PUBG recently responded in a statement by saying that the company will take measures to make the game more responsible. It said that it is working with parents, educators, and government bodies to improve the game, which has over 30 million users everyday.