The Madras High Court had recently ordered the state government to prohibit the download of TikTok and then lifted the ban shortly afterwards. Though the state government had many reasons to ban it, the app for short-form mobile videos has come to the aid of at least one woman in Tamil Nadu whose husband had abandoned her three years ago. She found him on TikTok.
The incident happened in Villupuram, Tamil Nadu. Jayapradha and Suresh were married and had two children. In 2017, Suresh, a native of Krishnagiri, left home for work and did not return. Jayapradha inquired with Suresh’s friends and relatives and when she did not get any leads, she went on to file a police complaint. Though an FIR was registered, listing Suresh as a ‘missing person’, there was no development in the case as per reports.
Recently, one of Jayapradha’s relatives stumbled upon a video on TikTok, in which she recognised a man looking very similar to Suresh, along with a trans woman, his friend. Sceptical about this, the relative immediately alerted Jayapradha and showed her the video, after which Jayapradha confirmed that the man was indeed her husband. She rushed to the Villupuram police station and alerted the officials, who then traced Suresh to Hosur with the help of a trans persons association in Villupuram. Suresh had been living with his mother in Hosur after disappearing from Villupuram, police told TNM.
On questioning, it was revealed that Suresh left home since he was not happy with some developments in the family. He had fled to Hosur and had settled down as a mechanic in a tractor company. The police counselled the couple and have sent them home. "We asked him whether he wanted to go back to his wife and kids. He agreed to go back. Therefore, we sent the couple back," the policeman said.
TikTok ban in Tamil Nadu
A few months ago, the Madras High Court had ordered a ban on TikTok, citing concerns of child safety. Before this, Tamil Nadu’s MLA Thamimun Ansari had also sought a ban on the app due to the high prevalance of obscene content, to which the state government had agreed. However, in reality, politicians were also upset about the number of videos on the app mocking them. On April 24, the Madras HC lifted the ban on further downloads of TikTok.