Mapusa: A Goa Court will on Thursday start hearing the sexual assault case against former Tehelka editor-in-chief Tarun Tejpal.
Previously, the court was supposed to hear the case from February 26 to March 1. However, it was postponed after Tejpal informed the court that he has changed his lawyer. Earlier on September 28 last year, trial court in Mapusa in Goa charged Tejpal with rape, sexual harassment and outraging the modesty of a woman.
Public Prosecutor, Fransisco Tavora informed that charges against Tejpal have been farmed under section 354-A (sexual harassment), 354-B (assault or use of criminal force on a woman with intent to disrobe), 341 and 342 (punishment for wrongful restraint) and 376 (punishment for rape) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
Tavora also informed that “Tejpal has pleaded not guilty.” Earlier, The High Court refused to stay the process of framing of charges against Tejpal at a lower court in Mapusa in North Goa.This is the first case in recent times in which the probe has relied on “position of trust” as a crucial aspect in an allegation of rape.
On December 6, 2017, the Supreme Court had directed the Bombay High Court to conduct a trial and examination of the witnesses in connection with the case. The apex court had also asked the state high court to decide on Tarun Tejpal’s plea seeking discharge.
Tejpal is indicted of sexually assaulting a junior woman colleague inside a lift at Hotel Grand Hyatt during an event organised by the Tehelka magazine in Goa in November in 2013.