Panaji, Nov 29 IBNS | 2 years ago

Former Tehelka Editor-in-Chief and sexual assault accused Tarun Tejpal was questioned by the Crime Branch of Goa police for over one and a half hours on Friday.

Tejpal emerged out of the Crime Branch office at around 9:10 pm accompanied by his lawyers and brothers but refused to speak to the media.

He was brought to CB minutes after he landed at Dabolim airport early evening where he faced protests.

The Goa Police accompanied him to the Crime Branch office.

Meanwhile, the sessions court has concluded hearing his bail plea and adjourned it for further hearing for Saturday.

His interim relief was extended till Saturday morning.

However, the judge, reportedly rejected all major arguments offered by Tejpal's lawyers as they petitioned for his bail.

The judge also censured them for naming the woman reporter who was allegedly assaulted. The court also failed to remain impressed with the defence claiming the case was hatched as a part of political conspiracy.

Advocate Geeta Luthra, representing Tarun Tejpal in the North District and Sessions Court, disclosed the identity of the victim twice in the open court while arguing for his anticipatory bail.

Special Public Prosecutor Saresh Lotlikar took serious objection of the matter.

Principal Sessions Judge Anuja Prabhudesai pulled up the advocate after which she had to apologize.

"It looks as if she (victim) is being made an accused... This will not be tolerated," the judge warned.

Tejpal earlier speaking to reporters said,"I am not running away from law. I got the summons yesterday. I am going to Goa to join probe."

Tejpal on Friday was granted interim protection by the court of Principal and Sessions Judge in Panjim.

Principal and Sessions judge Anuja Prabhudesai granted interim protection to Tejpal.

He was directed to furnish a bail bond of Rs 20,000.

This means he was not supposed to be arrested till 2:30 pm on Friday.

The lawyers appearing for Tejpal earlier argued before the court that he is ready to cooperate with the police and arrest will not serve the purpose.

They also argued that the summons reached late night and it was not feasible for him to reach Goa in such a short time.

Meanwhile, the young woman jounalist, who has alleged that she was sexually assaulted by her ex-employer Tejpal, on Friday said her body is not a plaything.

"Unlike Mr. Tejpal, who is fighting to protect his wealth, his influence and his privilege, I am fighting to preserve nothing except for my integrity and my right to assert that my body is my own and not the plaything of my employer," the journalist said in a statement issued on Friday.

"By filing my complaint, I have lost not just a job that I loved, but much-needed financial security and the independence of my salary. I have also opened myself to personal and slanderous attack. This will not be an easy battle," she said.

The woman said what Tejpal did to her fell within the legal definition of rape.

"Perhaps the hardest part of this unrelentingly painful experience has been my struggle with taxonomy. I don't know if I am ready to see myself as a 'rape victim', for my colleagues, friends, supporters and critics to see me thus.

"It is not the victim that categorizes crimes: it is the law. And in this case, the law is clear: what Mr. Tejpal did to me falls within the legal definition of rape," she said.

The victim said her complaint was not part of a pre-election political conspiracy.

"I am deeply concerned and very disturbed by insinuations that my complaint is part of a pre-election political conspiracy. I categorically refute such insinuations," she said.

(Posted on 29-11-2013)