Goa court acquits former Tehelka Editor Tarun Tejpal of rape, sexual assault charges

A Goa court on Friday acquitted former Editor of Tehelka magazine Tarun Tejpal of sexual assault charges alleged by a female colleague.
The judgment was pronounced by Additional Sessions Judge Kshama Joshi.
In a statement issued shortly after his acquittal, Tejpal thanked a host of lawyers who represented him in the case. These include Pramod Dubey, Aamir Khan, Ankur Chawla, Amit Desai, Kapil Sibal, Salman Khurshid, Aman Lekhi, Sandeep Kapoor, Raian Karanjawala, Ravi Sharma, Abhimanyu Bhandari and Shrikant Shivade.
He also paid tribute to Advocate Rajeev Gomes, who passed away from COVID-19 last week.
“Dynamic and brilliant, at 47, he was on the brink of a scintillating career as a criminal lawyer at the national level,” the statement said.
The case dates back to 2013, when Tejpal was accused of sexually assaulting a junior colleague in an elevator of a high-end hotel in Goa.
The Goa Police subsequently registered a First Information Report (FIR) against Tejpal for various offences including rape.
He was arrested in November 2013 and later released on bail in July 2014.
The trial against Tejpal commenced in 2017. In the meanwhile, he had moved the Bombay High Court for quashing the case against him, claiming that the charges were fabricated.
The High Court had dismissed the plea after which he appealed to the Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court also refused to interfere and rejected his petition on August 19, 2019.
He faced trial under IPC sections 341 (wrongful restraint), 342 (wrongful confinement), 354 (assault or criminal force with intent to outrage modesty), 354-A (sexual harassment), 354-B (assault or use of criminal force to woman with intent to disrobe), 376(2)(f) (person in a position of authority over women, committing rape) and 376(2)k) (rape by a person in a position of control).

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