Goa court orders rape charges against Tarun Tejpal

On September 28, Tejpal stands to be slapped with nine charges, of which five are of rape.

By: Express News Service | Panaji | Updated: September 8, 2017 8:48 am
Tarun Tejpal, Tejpal rape case, Tehelka editor rape case, Goa court Tejpal, Tejpal framing of charges, India news, indian Express Tarun Tejpal outside at Goa High Court on Tuesday. (Express Photo/Pradip Das)

A Mapusa sessions court on Thursday directed framing of all rape charges against Tarun Tejpal, former editor-in-chief of Tehelka. On September 28, Tejpal stands to be slapped with nine charges, of which five are of rape including sections introduced following amendments to the IPC. Tejpal is accused of sexually assaulting a female colleague inside a lift at Hotel Grand Hyatt on the night of November 7, 2013.

“The court has directed that charges should be framed against the accused for the offences alleged in the case. In addition, the court has added IPC section 354b (assault or use of criminal force on a woman with intent to disrobe),” said public prosecutor Francisco Tavora.

In its 48-page order, the court has detailed previous judgments before arriving at the decision that Tejpal needs to go on trial for all charges.

Initially, Tejpal was booked under 354-A (sexual harassment and punishment for sexual harassment), 376 (rape), 376(2)(k) IPC (rape of a woman by a person being in position of control or dominance over the woman) by the Crime Branch. Sections 341 and 342 (punishment for wrongful restraint), 376 (2)(f) (person in position of trust or authority over women, committing rape of such women), 376C (sexual intercourse by person in authority) and 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) were added later.

The hearings took place over three years, with the defence claiming material evidence. It was only in June that the prosecution asked for an additional IPC section of 354b.

When asked if they were satisfied with the order, Tavora said, “The court has considered all our arguments. It has made reference to whatever precedence it could rely on. We had to establish a prima facie case and this is more than a prima facie case.”

The prosecution has listed witness statements, digital evidence in terms of letter of apology written by the accused, including telephonic chats, and the hotel’s CCTV footage.

This is the first case in recent times in which the probe has relied on “position of trust” as a crucial aspect in an allegation of rape. The victim’s statement that she trusted her employer was emphasised in the chargesheet and in all the arguments over three years.

Chargesheeted on February 17, 2014, by the Goa Crime Branch, Tejpal will stand trial once the charges are officially framed at 2.30 pm on September 28.

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  1. Vidyadhar Madhusudan
    Sep 8, 2017 at 9:42 am
    Considering the number of rape happening in India, capital punishment should be made mandatory for rape.
    1. I
      Sep 8, 2017 at 7:01 am
      Why no Anti-TEJPAL "TAMASHA" by PSEUDO-SECULARIST, PSEUDO- INTELLECTUALS, JURNALIST etc ??????? And THREE YEARS to "FRAME CHARGES"!!!!! Does Rich and powerful has different set of Laws in India?????
      1. J
        Joseph Mumbai
        Sep 8, 2017 at 6:55 am
        Where are the women's group. Where are the progressives. Where are the liberals and seculars. This ra pist with money and political connections who abused and ra ped a working class women should be locked up for life. Before the judiciary loses credibility. Or better hanged as example.
        1. S
          s ramji
          Sep 8, 2017 at 9:31 am
          it surprises me also- bjp is in power at centre Goa maharashtra - why no action for last 3 years? any compromises??
          1. Naren B
            Sep 8, 2017 at 11:58 pm
            It is not in Government hands it is with cout and justice system.
        2. J
          Sep 8, 2017 at 6:15 am
          No sickular is talking? ThisbTejpal was funded by Christian rapist spy Sonia with a single goal to sivide Hibdus. And the muzzie sunni and christians united to divide India just like they did in 1947. Now they are exposed.
          1. T
            Tanbeer alam
            Sep 8, 2017 at 8:25 am
            Woh woh r u imbalance person or born with stinking chaddi.abbe c. .. ye tere ko akal hai ya bus chaddiyon ke paise pe aish kerke demag ka ma bap ho gaya hai.bhai itna bhi tension nahi lene ka werna pata nahi demag ka dahi Na ho jaye.just chill maar yar