Investigating charges of rape against Tehelkas former and former editor-in-chief Tarun Tejpal,the Goa Police Sunday recorded statements of the three colleagues whom the victim had first approached following the incident.
The colleagues,G Vishnu,Shougat Dasgupta and Ishan Tankha,were questioned on the action they took on learning about the incident.
Sources said the three had corroborated the victims statement and also claimed that they had informed the Tehelka management on learning about the incident.
A Goa Police team will now visit the Tehelka journalist in Mumbai and get her statement,following which Tejpal will be asked to join the investigation.
The victim had also marked her first complaint narrating the incident to the three colleagues,along with Managing Editor Shoma Chaudhury.
The four-hour questioning was conducted at Goa Sadan on Sunday morning. The state police team flew back to Goa in the afternoon.
As of now we have collected CCTV footage from the hotel and the mails that were exchanged following the incident. Once we get the victims statement,we will either ask Tejpal to come to Goa for interrogation or our team may come back to question him. Once we get the victims statement,the case will be stronger, a Goa Police official said.
Goa DGP Kishen Kumar admitted that they hadnt contacted the victim yet. We have just begun our investigation, he said. Asked why Tejpal had not been interrogated yet,he added: We are doing a proper investigation. We did inquire about him. The investigation cannot be completed in a single day.
As per sources,the CCTV footage the officials have seized only shows Tejpal and the alleged victim walking into a lift and then coming out. There is no visual evidence of what happened inside the elevator.
On Saturday night,the three-member team had quizzed Chaudhury for close to nine hours,visiting the Tehelka office at around 4 pm and leaving post midnight. Sources said a hard disk was seized and Shomas statement taken on record.
Shoma told reporters Sunday that she had fully cooperated with police and hoped it will bring clarity and justice to the case. Yesterday,at the Tehelka office,the Goa Police took my deposition for about nine hours. It was an extremely courteous experience and I fully cooperated and showed every document that was relevant,every email exchange that was there between my colleagues,the management. It was shared,it was a good experience and I hope it helps bring clarity and justice to the entire case, Chaudhary said.
In a parallel development,National Commission of Women has asked the Mumbai police to provide security to the victim while stressing that the woman journalist should come forward and put her case firmly.