Update: Hours after removal from Play Store by Google, Paytm has been restored for downloads on the Android platform.
“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,” said a Paytm blog post while announcing the app’s return.
Paytm First Games is still not available on Play Store.
Earlier: Digital payments app Paytm and the app of its gaming arm Paytm First Games have been taken down from Google Play Store. The Noida-based company’s other apps, including Paytm Mall, Paytm Money and Paytm for Business, are still available on the Android store.
The five apps are available for download for iOS customers on the App Store.
“We don’t allow online casinos or support any unregulated gambling apps that facilitate sports betting. This includes if an app leads consumers to an external website that allows them to participate in paid tournaments to win real money or cash prizes, it is a violation of our policies,” Google said on its blog as the reason for the removal of the apps.
Though the post mentions its strict policies about gambling and online gaming which could be the reason for the removal of the Paytm First Games app, it doesn’t explain the reason explicitly on why the payments app was removed.
“Paytm Android app is temporarily unavailable on Google’s Play Store for 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,” said Paytm in a tweet.
Paytm First Games, a fantasy gaming platform for sports like cricket, football, basketball and Kabaddi, had recently roped in Sachin Tendulkar as its brand ambassador. Earlier this week, the company said that it aims to reach 100 million users in the upcoming T20 league and has a plan to invest Rs 300 crore on branding and marketing this year.
This is not the first time when an app has been taken down by Google for violating its policies. In May, digital payment app MobiKwik was removed from Google Play Store over violation of Google’s ads policy.
This is a developing story and will be updated as additional information becomes available.