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After alert,Tehelka fest website removes pictures of complainant it had uploaded

Tejpal is being through a set of tests to check his psychiatric and physical condition.

Written by Smita Nair | Panaji |
December 3, 2013 2:01:01 am

Two pictures of the complainant in the Tehelka sexual assault case were pulled out of the official Thinkfest website (thinkworks.in) on Monday after they were brought to the notice of the Goa Police.

The pictures,part of a slideshow from the November 8-10 festival held at the Grand Hyatt hotel in Bambolim,identified the woman,a journalist who was formerly with Tehelka.

The journalist has accused the founder-editor of Tehelka,Tarun Tejpal,of sexually assaulting her on two occasions at the festival. The pictures could be seen on the site on the day the woman gave her statement before a magistrate in Goa.

The Goa Police Crime Branch on Monday put

Tejpal through a comprehensive,eight-hour medical examination that included tests for potency and to check his psychiatric history and mental health.

Senior officers close to the investigation said the police were working to “build a case of legal rape”,and were keen to ensure that no aspect was left unchecked.

As Tejpal was being ferried between departments at the Goa Medical College in Bambolim all day,his lawyers were at the court of Judicial Magistrate (First Class) Shama Joshi,seeking proper ventilation,a fan,and a mattress in his cell in lock-up.

Tejpal’s lawyers said what they were seeking was “not a matter of pride,(it was) a plea on purely humanitarian grounds”. Prosecutor Francis Tavera argued that the Bombay High Court had laid down clear rules against such treatment. Magistrate Joshi has reserved her order until December 4.

Tejpal,who remained stoic before media cameras,will now be taken to the scene of the alleged crime,where he will be required to narrate the sequence of events over the two days on which he is alleged to have assaulted the complainant. Officials said he will be taken to the lift in which the alleged crime took place,and to the room that he occupied during the Thinkfest event last month.

Two sets of panch witnesses will record the entire re-construction of both the alleged assaults,officials said. The records of the phones used by both Tejpal and the manager of Tehelka’s Mumbai office (which the complainant has alleged was used by Tejpal to call her) are being studied,the officials said.

In the morning,following checks for diabetes,blood pressure and other lifestyle ailments,Tejpal was taken to the Forensic Medicine and Toxicology Department for the potency test which,under the new rape law,is mandatory for all accused in sexual offences. The test is intended to check for the “capability” of an accused to commit a sexual offence,officials said.

He was subsequently taken for tests of his bones,chest,lungs and fitness levels,as well as of his “agility”. An officer close to the investigation said the joints of the accused needed to be tested to check them against specific accusations in the complainant’s narrative. “We are recreating the crime sequence medically too,” the officer said.

Later,Tejpal was taken to the Institute of Psychiatry and Human Behaviour for a psychiatric evaluation. An official said this test is carried out if the accused is of mature age,or if there is an allegation that he was inebriated,or if there is an indication of temporary insanity.

Officials said their intention was to guard against a possible defence from the accused that he was not “capable” of the alleged crime physically or mentally. “A watertight case is one where precaution is put on record. Every such test is permissible under the law,” said an official.

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