Google has pulled India's most valuable startup Paytm from its Play Store. The app was taken down in India on Friday morning.
Paytm, a major rival to Google Pay in the country, was reportedly taken off the Play Store for repeatedly violating gambling policies. The Play Store prohibits online casinos and unregulated apps which promotes and facilitates online betting in India.
Google holds an app responsible if that app leads users to an external website that lets them participate in paid tournament or games where they can win real money or cash prizes. This is considered a violation of its Play Store guidelines.
Paytm games division, Paytm First Games, offers fantasy sports games, was also pulled from the Play Store. Just this week, the firm announced cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar as their brand ambassador.
Paytm posted a tweet to confirm that the app will be restored shortly and that users’ money is safe.
It has been suggested that this headline move just a day before IPL 2020 kicks off is to serve as a reminder to other apps looking to cash in on the annual boom in cricket betting around the popular tournament.