Tejpal skips interrogation, to be arrested

New Delhi: Tehelka founder editor, Tarun Tejpal, who is under investigation over claims he sexually assaulted a woman twice in a hotel in the holiday resort of Goa earlier this month is likely to be arrested by the police following his failure to appear for interrogation.

Goa police had asked Tejpal to report for interrogation at 3pm on Thursday.

The victim has already given her statement to the Goa police.

Goa police have also rejected Tejpal’s request to allow him to appear before it on Saturday. Tejpal sent the request after a formal summon was sent to him through the Goa resident commissioner based in New Delhi on Wednesday. Tejpal took the plea that since he is not a resident of Goa, he needs some time to make himself available for questioning.

In a related development, Tejpal Thursday withdrew his anticipatory bail plea that he had filed in the Delhi High Court. It is expected that he would file the anticipatory bail application before the Goa High Court Friday.

Tejpal has denied the charges of rape against him and said that the encounter that is being described as rape was light hearted bantering, which has been protested by the victim, who happened to be a close friend of Tejpal’s daughter.

Goa police filed an FIR on its own and are presently collecting evidence. A team of Goa police had earlier this week questioned Chaudhury and some other journalists in the Greater Kailash office of Tehelka and seized Tejpal’s laptop that was used to exchange e-mails with the victim. The email exchanges included his defence and apology to the victim.

Tejpal has since made a U turn insisting he was innocent and whatever happened was with mutual consent besides questioning character of the victim who recorded her statement before a magistrate in Goa on Wednesday.

Shoma Quits Tehelka

The managing editor of Indian investigative magazine Tehelka resigned on Thursday after coming under fire over her handling of allegations that the publication’s founder sexually assaulted a young reporter.

In an email to staff, Shoma Chaudhury denied being part of a “cover-up” to protect Tehelka’s founder and editor Tarun Tejpal who is under investigation over claims he sexually assaulted the woman in a hotel in the holiday state of Goa.

However Chaudhury, who announced last week that Tejpal was standing aside for six months over what he has described as “a bad lapse of judgement,” acknowledged that “she could have done many things differently.”

The alleged victim, who has since resigned from the magazine, first made the allegations against Tejpal in a detailed email to Chaudhury.

“As a result of what’s transpired over the past few days my integrity has repeatedly been questioned by people from our fraternity and, in fact, by the public at large,” Chaudhury wrote in her mail which has been seen by AFP.

“I do not want questions raised about my integrity to tarnish the image of Tehelka, which it has done in the past week. Therefore, I resign as Managing Editor with immediate effect,” she added.

Chaudhury’s resignation comes three days after the alleged victim also quit the magazine, saying she had come under pressure from Tejpal’s family to drop her allegations.

So far six journalists including Chaudhury and the victim have quit Tehelka, a weekly magazine published both in English and Hindi after the victim’s complaint to Chaudhury about sexual assault by Tejpal on November 7 and 8 in a Goa hotel was leaked. Agencies

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