After Tandav, and Mirzapur 2, Pooja Bhatt's web-series 'Bombay Begums' has courted controversy over its portrayal of children.
Issuing a notice to Netflix, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has asked Netflix to stop streaming the new series.
Citing inappropriate portrayal of teenagers, the apex child rights body has directed the subscription-based streaming service provider to take down the show and submit a detailed action report within 24 hours.
Failing this, as per the Commission's notice, it will be "constrained" to initiate appropriate legal action against the American streaming service.
"You are directed to look into the matter and immediately stop streaming of this series and furnish a detailed action report within 24 hours, failing which the Commission will be constrained to initiate appropriate action pursuant to the provisions of Section 14 of CPCR Act, 2005," NCPCR said in its notice to Netflix.
Objecting to the alleged unseemly depiction of children in the series, the commission said it will "not only pollute the young minds of the children, and may also result into abuse and exploitation of children at the hands of the perpetrator(s)/offender(s)."
The NCPCR said that it took the action after receiving a complaint from two Twitter handles that allege that the series normalises minors indulging in "casual sex" and drug abuse.
"The Commission doesn't allow representing, portraying, glorifying children in India in such a manner on any media platform/internet/OTTs, etc.," it said in the notice, further advising Netflix to take "extra precaution" while streaming any content concerning children.
Launched on International Women's Day on March 8, Bombay Begums is a six-part series that takes viewers into the lives of five women of different age groups and backgrounds who struggle with ambition, societal pressure, personal flaws, and sexism. The series is directed by Lipstick Under My Burkha-famed Alankrita Shrivastava and stars Pooja Bhatt, Shabana Goswami, Rahul Bose, Danish Husain, Amruta Subhash, Aadhya Anand, Plabita Borthakur, and Vivek Gomber.
OTT platforms have come under tight scrutiny of late after the Centre formally tightened its control over digital and OTT platforms, notifying a three-tier mechanism that it called a "soft-touch regulatory architecture." Netflix has previously courted controversy when shows such as Tandav and Mirzapur 2 were slammed for showing explicit and inappropriate content.