The Supreme Court on Monday refused to quash the alleged rape charges against journalist Tarun Tejpal in a case registered by his former junior colleague in 2013.
The apex court further ordered that the trial in the case must be concluded within a period of six months.
The court in its hearing observed that the charges against the senior journalist were serious and “an assault on the privacy of the victim.”
The court was hearing Tehelka magazine’s founder Tarun Tejpal’s plea seeking quashing of charges in an alleged sexual assault case lodged against him by a former woman colleague.
He had moved the apex court challenging the Bombay High Court’s December 20, 2017 order dismissing his plea seeking quashing of charges.
The Goa Police had earlier claimed that there were “contemporaneous” WhatsApp messages and e-mails which showed Tejpal should face trial in the alleged sexual assault case.
The police, while opposing Tejpal’s plea seeking quashing of charges framed against him, had told the bench that there was “ample material” warranting a trial in the case.
Tejpal’s counsel had refuted the allegations and told the bench that certain WhatsApp messages were concealed and referred to CCTV footage of the hotel where the alleged incident took place.
In 2013, when he was the editor-in-chief of Tehelka magazine, Tejpal was accused of raping a female colleague, who in her complaint to the police alleged that she raped by the journalist in the elevator of a five-star resort in Goa where the magazine was hosting an international conclave organised by Tehelka.
He has, however, denied all the allegations levelled against him.
Following the registration of FIR, Tejpal was arrested on November 30, 2013, and remained in police and judicial custody for nearly a year, before being released on bail. Tejpal subsequently resigned as the magazine’s head.