5:17 am - Tuesday June 18, 2024

Will Tehelka founder Tarun Tejpal get bail today?

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Panaji, Goa –  The Goa bench of the Bombay High Court will hear the bail application of Tehelka founder Tarun Tejpal today.

Nearly three months after Mr Tejpal, 50, was accused of sexually assaulting a junior colleague, the Goa police yesterday formally charged him with raping the woman and said there is enough proof that he admitted to the crime.

In its charge-sheet filed before a magistrate, the Goa police cited proof that Mr Tejpal “admitted commission of rape” in documents, including emails to the woman, and other statements.

Mr Tejpal has been charged with rape, unwelcome and explicit sexual overtures and taking advantage of one’s official position.

The chargesheet runs into over 2800 pages and has 152 witnesses, including the journalist and other staff of the Tehelka magazine.  While Mr Tejpal has denied the allegations, if found guilty, the maximum punishment he could face is life imprisonment.

The police says they will ask for a fast track trial with daily hearings to wrap up the case in 60 days.

Mr Tejpal was accused by his younger colleague of sexually assaulting her at a 5-star hotel in Goa during Tehelka’s ThinkFest in November. After a series of emails between the woman, Mr Tejpal and the magazine’s managing editor Shoma Chaudhury were leaked, the senior editor was arrested on November 30.

The senior editor has been charged under the new, tougher laws on sexual assault enacted in the aftermath of the gang-rape of a young student on a moving bus in Delhi in December, 2012, which jolted the nation.

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