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Tehelka trial in fast-track court,says Parrikar

Judicial Magistrate Kshama Joshi rejected Tejpal’s appeal for a fan in his cell in lock-up.

Written by Smita Nair | Panaji |
December 5, 2013 3:36:13 am

The Tehelka sexual assault case will be tried in a fast-track court to ensure speedy justice,Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar said on Wednesday.

“The Goa Police have informed me that they are sticking to filing the chargesheet in a month’s period. We will then send the case to a fast-track court,to be tried by a woman judge,” Parrikar told reporters at the secretariat in Porvorim.

The amended rape law requires the chargesheet to be filed,and the trial conducted,within specified time frames.

Investigators confirmed on Wednesday that they have approached the chief judicial magistrate’s court to have summons issued to former Tehelka managing editor Shoma Chaudhury. Chaudhury has been criticised for delaying action,including not informing the police,on her colleague’s complaint of sexual assault against the founder-editor of Tehelka,Tarun Tejpal.

Three other former Tehelka journalists in whom the complainant confided after the alleged sexual assault,have agreed to record their statements before a magistrate.

Investigators said all emails and other communication between Chaudhury and the complainant,and between the complainant and Tejpal,have been put on record. “No messages have been deleted. His BlackBerry has been seized,and we also took everything from his system (personal and official computers) and seized other electronic data,” an officer who is part of the investigating team said.

At the news conference,Chief Minister Parrikar said both the complainant and Tejpal would get justice.

“I will also ensure justice to Tejpal. The investigating officer is currently collecting all evidence,and the team will discuss the matter with the director of prosecution. It is only after everyone is convinced that the case will be tried. Until then he is only an accused,” he said.

About the woman journalist,Parrikar said: “We promise her justice because she has shown the rare courage to come out against a big personality. At least she should have a sense of justice after all that she went through.”

Tejpal was put through a second round of medical tests on Wednesday as part of the investigation. He will also undergo a second round of psychiatric tests at the Institute of Psychiatry and Mental Health,said an official.

Earlier in the morning,Judicial Magistrate Kshama Joshi rejected Tejpal’s appeal for a fan in his cell in lock-up.

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