09:49 GMT28 January 2021
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    In recent months, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has amplified his voice in urging software developers to create made-in-India apps for shopping, socialising, and gaming – which would be more secure for Indian users than foreign made apps. Indian developers are now taking inspiration from other ideas to engage app-hungry Indians.

    Being tagged as "India's response to Twitter", a rip-off of the popular microblogging app has been launched in India named "Tooter". Made in India, the platform works just like Twitter, but allows users to "toot" instead of "tweet". The resemblance between the two apps gets more uncanny because of Tooter's default blue and white colour scheme which totally mirrors that of Twitter. 

    Tooter is derived from the Mastodon project - a free and open-source self-hosted social networking service. Instead of a white bird, the logo of Tooter is a conch shell – a symbol that holds religious significance in "Hindustan". 

    In its description, Tooter boldly describes itself as "just a digital colony of the American Twitter Indian Company no different than what we were under the British East India Company" – while attempting to play on the nationalist sentiments of Indians.

    ​Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who with over 63 million followers is one of world's most followed political leaders on Twitter, already has a verified account on Tooter.

    ​Taking all the aforementioned factors into consideration, netizens in India stand divided over accepting the Twitter rip-off. While some people have welcomed the India-made app with open arms, others have called the app "embarrassing" – turning it into hilarious memes.

    Netizens also pointed out the irony of Tooter declaring itself a "desi" option instead of American platform Twitter and then accepting email addresses functioning on Google servers – which is again an American company.

    ​Tooter, reportedly created in June of this year, is presently available on the web and for Android users. Its iOS app remains missing at present.

    Earlier in September, after the Indian government added popular mobile game "PlayersUnknown Battlegroung (PUBG)" to the list of banned apps for links with China, a tech company called nCore Games from India's Bengaluru announced a new multiplayer mid-core online mobile game title "Fearless and United: Guards (FAU:G)".

    At that time, the introduction of FAU-G was met with memes mocking the lack of originality Indian developers are presently struggling with.

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