Illegal Download Of Pokemon Go: Tension In Gujarat HC

Illegal download of Pokemon Go in India creates stress for Gujarat High Court. The HC has asked the government to put a complete ban on the game. Read the full story here!

Illegal Download of Pokemon


Since its introduction in July this year, Pokemon Go has heralded a new wave of excitement and enthusiasm amongst all game lovers. This smartphone game, which is the genius of Nintendo, has taken the gaming experience to a whole new level. With its augmented reality theme and location-based setting, it has garnered accolades throughout the nations of Australia, New Zealand, and the US. But in spite of its growing popularity, it has also gathered controversies along the way, especially from India. Before even being officially introduced in the country, it has become a part of big controversy in Gujarat.

Pokemon Go has become a source of great trouble in India. Several cases have been found, where gaming enthusiasts are downloading the pirated version of the game, as it is not legally available in the country yet. Many PILs have also been filed in the Gujarat High Court, accusing the game to be a “threat to public safety”, and for “hurting religious sentiments”. As a result, the High court has pleaded the state government to put a stop to the illegal download of Pokemon Go. The division bench led by Chief Justice R Subhash Reddy and Justice V M Pancholi, has in fact, asked the government to ban the game in India permanently. A government lawyer was about to file a reply in the matter, when the court adjourned the hearing to November 9.

The High Court states that the PILs laid some serious accusations on Pokemon Go, so, it needed time to come to a final conclusion. Thus, the hearing had to be postponed. One of the petitioners who filed the PIL named Alay Dave, blamed the game for using images of “eggs” in the places of worship of various religions. This was “seriously hurting religious sentiments of many worshippers”, according to him.

Another petitioner claimed that Pokemon Go is a hazard to “public safety”. As we all know, the game requires the players to walk around in the open, which includes the busy roadways and the heavy traffic. Picking up on this major concern, the petitioner stated that the players were walking around capturing cartoon characters, thus, ignoring the road situation. This was leading to frequent accidents. An accusation like this could not be ignored by the High Court.

Amongst all the negatory accusations, there was one PIL which was in favour of the hugely popular game. It disregarded any accusation that blamed Pokemon Go for hurting religious sentiments. In fact, it pleaded that the US company which has developed the game, must make it available for download in India.

Gujarat High court is in a fix after hearing both sides of the PILs. It cannot ignore the accusations that have been laid on the game; the supportive side can’t be overlooked, either. Its decision to postpone the hearing, seems pretty logical here. All that’s left to see is whether, it will put a stop to the illegal download of Pokemon Go, or let things be as they are!


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