Panaji: 9:20: Tehelka Founder-Editor Tarun Tejpal has been taken into custody by the Goa police.
9:00 pm: NCW member Nirmala Samant says that she is happy with the court verdict denying Tarun Tejpal’s anticipatory bail plea. “I am happy that the justice has been done to the victim,” says Samant.
Tarun Tejpal is at the crime branch office of Goa Police which is probing the sexual assault case involving a woman journalist.
8:47 pm: We will arrest Tejpal shortly: Investigation Officer Sunita Sawant.
8:40 pm: Tarun Tejpal’s lawyer Geeta Luthra says that she is yet to receive a statement. Luthra also said that Tejpal was fully cooperating with the police. “The detailed order has not yet come. Court has told us that they can not accept our anticipatory bail plea,” says Luthra. Meanwhile, the court has allowed Tejpal’s lawyers to be present for some time during interrogation. He will be allowed home cooked food and clothes.
8:28 pm: Goa DGP has confirmed that Tehelka Found-Editor Tarun Tejpal will be arrested. To be taken into custody after seeing the order. He is already with Crime branch. Sources say court order is 20-page long.
8:00 pm: The Goa court has denied the anticipatory bail to Tehelka Found-Editor Tarun Tejpal in the sexual assault case involving a woman journalist. The Goa Police will formally arrest Tejpal soon. Within 24 hours of arrest, the Goa Police will have to produce Tejpal in court. “Case is sensitive and we need custodial interrogation,” said Goa DGP.
6:50 pm: The judge is still to decide on the anticipatory bail plea moved by Tarun Tejpal. She is inside the chamber for over 2 hours now.
5:45 pm: Judge hearing Tarun Tejpal’s anticipatory bail plea hearing is getting the order typed in her chamber.
5:00 pm: Tarun Tejpal has reached the crime branch office of the Goa Police. He is unlikely to be present in court when the court passes its order on his anticipatory bail plea.
12:45 pm: A person tried to throw a black cloth on Tarun Tejpal to mark his protest outside the court while he was trying to enter his car after the arguments on his bail plea ended. The police have taken the protester into custody.
12:45 pm: Tejpal leaves the court. His three-member counsel team remain at the court to strategise on his behalf.
12:35 pm: The arguments in the bail plea hearing have concluded. The Goa court will give its order on Tarun Tejpal’s bail plea after 4:30 pm.
12:15 pm: Prosecution demands 14-day custodial interrogation of Tejpal accused for a proper investigation. It said Tejpal has attempted to influence the complainant and has maligned her. His being at large is not in the interest of the investigation.
12:13 pm: The prosecution said that they were adding salt to the girl’s injuries by questioning her character. “You are worried about your reputation getting sullied, let me tell you, it has already gone for a toss. We have to ascertain his claims of ‘ mild bantering’,” it added.
12:10 pm: The prosecution argued that the complainant’s statement makes out a case of rape. “CCTV footage confirms that to an extent,” the lawyer said.
The prosecution also accused Tejpal of trying to misguide the investigations. “You are trying to misguide and you are saying that police is biased. You can not be interrogated at your own terms so that you can be properly interrogated,” the prosecution argued adding that the possibility of the accused interfering in the investigation was visible.
11:48 am: Accusing Tejpal of cooperating on only his terms, the prosecution demanded a custodial interrogation for him.
11:45 am: The prosecution said that the ‘nature’ of their meeting what Tejpal referred to as a ‘light hearted banter’ needs to be probed.
11:40 am: The prosecution said that the girl has been consistent in her version throughout the case. “The victim’s version has been recorded in front of a magistrate while the accused is constantly changing his version.
11:36 am: Arguing for the case, the prosecution says that she is the “sole bread winner of the family”. The prosecution added, “the accused gave a job to her. The father of the victim and the accused are friends. If the lady had reacted at the fest there would have been commotion. After discussing with her colleagues present at the fest she communicated it to her other boss in Delhi.”
11:30 pm: Defence ends its arguments in the case. Prosecution begins its arguments now.
11:05 am: Tejpal’s lawyer said that Tejpal was willing to comply even if his bank accounts are frozen.
10:59 am: “I will give my mobile number and location and I will not go to Mumbai where the victim stays so there is no scope of tampering with evidence and affecting the victim,” Tejpal’s lawyer said.
10:50 am: Tejpal offers to stay in Goa for the entire course of the investigations. “I offer to stay in Goa for no matter how much time they want, till they decide to file the chargesheet. I can present myself whenever they want at a reasonable notice,” Tejpal’s lawyer said on his behalf.
10:32 am: Tarun Tejpal reaches the Goa sessions court.
10:31 am: Judge asks Tejpal’s lawyer not to repeat the arguments and to cover those points which were not covered during the arguments on Friday.
10:30 am: Arguments for the bail plea hearing have resumed. Continuing its arguments, the defence questioned the need of custodial interrogation when Tejpal was already cooperating the in probe.
10: 05 am: Tejpal’s lawyer arrives at the Goa sessions court for the bail plea hearing which is expected to begin at 10:30 am.
9:55 am: While Tejpal is claiming to have joined the investigations at the crime branch, the Goa police has decided not to ask him even a single question before they get his custody. It is being said that this move by the Goa police is to avoid the argument by the defence that he has already joined the investigations and thus there was no need to take him into custody.
9:35 am: Asserting his stand yet again that he is not evading investigations, Tehelka Founder-Editor Tarun Tejpal before leaving for the court said, “We have joined the investigations of Crime Branch. We joined the crime branch investigations yesterday itself.”
9:30 am: Tarun Tejpal reaches crime branch office in Goa sessions court for the hearing of his anticipatory bail plea.
This after there was high drama on Friday in the alleged sexual assault case involving Tarun Tejpal. Tejpal got interim relief from arrest and his bail plea hearing was deferred till Saturday morning in the Goa sessions court.
The court had on Friday maintained that Tejpal cannot be arrested till his bail plea is heard. However, the interim relief does not allow Tejpal to escape interrogation from Goa Police. Goa DGP Kishan Kumar said that no one has stopped the police from interrogating Tarun Tejpal in the sexual assault case. “We will attempt again to meet him,” Kumar said.
Tejpal landed at Panaji’s Dabolim airport on Friday evening after raids were conducted by joint teams of Goa and Delhi police at his residence in Delhi. The mystery surrounding his whereabouts unraveled as he finally turned up at the Delhi airport on Friday afternoon to board an Indigo flight to Goa.
Dismissing allegations of him evading interrogation, he made it clear that he had received the summons from Goa Police and was going to join them in the investigations.
Tejpal’s counsel in the court during the hearing of the anticipatory bail plea, raised questions over the timing of the complainant’s e-mail, 11 days after the alleged sexual assault and also questioned her behaviour.
“If there is any CCTV footage I will be exonerated. Let us all view the whole CCTV footage. The fest went on for 7,8,9, 10 and 11 and the incident happened on the 7th and the 8th for a few seconds. I want to ask is the lady normal and her conduct normal. We can’t treat whatever she is saying as gospel. Take my version and also her version,” the lawyer argued.
During the arguments, Tejpal’s lawyer named the woman journalist for which he was forced to apologise in the court.
While, the court granted Tejpal interim relief and deferred the bail plea hearing till Saturday, it also passed some strong comments against him and reprimanded his legal team sharply for attempting to malign the complainant’s image.
The judge pointed out to the lawyer to keep his arguments to the bail application. “At this stage you cannot go into the conduct of the victim. We cannot put her in the dock,” said the judge.
Charged with sexual harassment of an employee at Tehelka’s Think fest in Goa earlier in November, Tejpal has been in the line of fire ever since the complainant made her story public.