Google Scrapes Paytm from Play Store over Policy Violation

Google removed Paytm from its Play store due to a violation of its gambling policies. Paytm, a top contender in India’s digital payments market sells everything from digital gold to insurance and also enables money transfers on a state-backed payments network.

Gaming Policy Violation

Paytm, which is one of the most valued startups of India, vanished from the Play Store in India earlier on Friday, after Google found it violating its gaming policy in the country, according to a Google spokesperson, who refused to provide other details.

Paytm First games, a fantasy gaming platform, is also not present on Google Play store, while both the apps are available on Apple’s iOS store.

Paytm validated on Twitter that its Android app is temporarily unavailable on the Play store for carrying out new downloads or updates. “It will be back very soon. All your money is completely safe, and you can continue to enjoy your Paytm app as normal,” it tweeted.

According to a person who knew about the matter, the trouble began from an IPL-linked promotion. Paytm was running a promotion enabling consumers to collect cricket cards linked to their spent amount, the person said only on the condition of anonymity. A certain number of cards would lead to the winning of cashback.

Paytm will Come Back

This person also claimed that Paytm is not the only online platform providing such a promotion. However, this claim has still not been confirmed.

Paytm is working to ditch the promotion and the app should be back on the Google Play store soon, according to the anonymous person who was quoted earlier.

Meanwhile, Google, without directly pointing towards Paytm, put out a blog post on Friday on its gambling policy. According to the policy, the firm doesn’t allow online casinos/support any unregulated gambling apps that expedite sports betting. “This includes if the app leads consumers to an external website that allows them to participate in paid tournaments to win real money/cash prizes.”

“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,” according to the blog. “And in the case where there are repeated policy violations, we may take more serious action which may include terminating Google Play Developer accounts.”