With close to $87 Million in revenue from the USA, TikTok would lose its second most valuable market if Trump goes ahead with the stated ban. The most valuable market is already gone for ByteDance, TikTok’s parent firm when Modi decided to ban 59 apps including TikTok. Is Trump following Modi?

The series of events point to how Trump listens to Modi. Recall Howdy Modi event in Houtson? As head of state, Trump attended a private event in honor of Modi, attended by over 50,000 Indian Americans. Trump openly denounced ‘Islamic terrorism’ in this event and aligned himself with Modi. Modi reciprocated by hosting Trump in India and Motera stadium in Gujrat saw over 100,000 attendees. Trump listened to Modi and broke the US tradition of visiting Pakistan on South Asia visit.

During Covid, after Modi allowed exports of 50 million Hydroxychloroquine tablets, Trump acceded to Indian request for ventilators and again listened to his friend Modi. Trump also agreed to advanced weapons systems deal with Modi for military helicopters. Another example of how Trump shares a close bond with Modi is when US sides with India on LAC issue and also deployed its warships in Indo-Pacific waters.

It is clear that Trump is aligned with Modi and he also realizes that China has a role to play in his elections. There are reports that Chinese scholars are being planted in major US universities and they pass on sensitive technology details. Chinese allegedly support anti-Trump forces since Trump has already been very vocal about unfair Chinese trade practices and Chinese businesses are under scrutiny. Trump knows that sentiment is against China and he would ensure that he gets all the ammunition to fire at will in this perception battle. Modi just gave him a ready-made weapon in the TikTok ban and Trump listened intently.

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