- Google has pulled Fintech major Paytm from the Play Store for allegedly violating its gambling policies.
- Google team that worked with developers reached out to Paytm repeatedly to fix the issues with the app.
- However, the app is back on app store with a new update.
Google has pulled Fintech major Paytm from the Play Store for allegedly violating its gambling policies. Paytm First games, a fantasy gaming platform, is also not available on the Google Play store, while both the apps are available on Apple’s iOS store.
Responding to the matter, Paytm said in a tweet that the Paytm Android app is temporarily unavailable on Google's Play Store for new downloads or updates.
According to a person familiar with the matter, the trouble emerged from an IPL-linked promotion. Paytm was running a promotion allowing consumers to collect cricket cards linked to their spending, this person told on the condition of anonymity. A certain number of cards would earn them a cashback.
A source within Google said that the Google team that worked with developers reached out to Paytm repeatedly to fix the issues with the app. However, Paytm made repeated violations of the Google policy, noted the source.
Paytm vanished from Google Play Store a few hours after Google’s Suzanne Frey, who is Vice President, Product, Android Security, and Privacy, detailed the guidelines in a blog post.
“We have these policies to protect users from potential harm. When an app violates these policies, we notify the developer of the violation and remove the app from Google Play until the developer brings the app into compliance. And in the case where there are repeated policy violations, we may take more serious action which may include terminating Google Play Developer accounts,” she wrote.
However, the app is back on app store with a new update hours after it was pulled down.
"While it is clear that all activities on Paytm are completely lawful, we have temporarily removed the cashback component in an effort to meet the Play Store policy requirements," the company said after the app is restored.
While sports betting is banned in India, fantasy sports, where users select their favorite players and win if their preferred teams or players play well, is not illegal in most Indian states.
Paytm is India’s most valuable startup and claims over 50 million monthly active users. Paytm is owned by an Indian company called One97 Communications Ltd, which was founded by Vijay Shekhar Sharma but the company had received massive funding from fintech firm Ant Financials, which is an ally of China's Alibaba group.