New Delhi : The young woman journalist who has charged 50-year old Tarun Tejpal, the editor-in-chief of the investigative newsmagazine Tehelka, with sexual assault, has quit her job, so that she is free from the ‘’pressures of being an employee.”
Two days ago, in a statement she had said that she was under intense pressure at such a ‘’traumatic time’’ from Tejpal’s family members to ‘’protect him.”
The journalist who used to work out of Mumbai had charged that some influential member from the Tejpal family had visited her mother’s house to find out as to what ‘’did she want’’ and ‘’who was helping her legally.”
The journalist also claims to be deeply upset at the lack of support offered by the Tehelka and believes Managing Editor Shoma Chaudhary has tried to orchestrate a “cover-up.”
The reporter has alleged that Chaudhary’s reaction to her complaint was prejudiced by her concern to protect Tehelka. She feels especially betrayed by the managing editor’s refusal to describe Tejpal’s actions as “sexual misconduct” in an email circulated to Tehelka employees.
The said incident had taken place in Goa, and the state police have already registered a FIR against Tejpal. Investigating the crime as a rape, they have questioned three employees from the Tehelka magazine in whom the woman journalist had confided about the incident.
Tejpal and the entire Tehelka management had initially chosen to downplay the seriousness of the crime by calling it a lapse of judgement; Tejpal had even offered to step down from the editorship for six months as atonement. But now he has sought anticipatory bail from the Delhi High Court.
The Goa police, in turn, have issued a lookout notice for Tejpal.
The case has sent shock waves in the media fraternity, and some journalists have already resigned from the Tehelka magazine. There are reports that more people may resign in the next few days.
Meanwhile, NCW member Nirmala Samant Prabhavalkar expressed surprise over Goa police leaving Delhi on Sunday without arresting Tejpal. “They interrogated the managing director Shoma Choudhary and recorded the statements of three other colleagues with whom the victim had shared the details of the incident, but surprisingly they left Delhi without arresting Tejpal,” she said.