Goa court frames charges against Tarun Tejpal in rape case


September 26 (ANI): The Goa High Court on Tuesday refused to stay framing of charges against former Tehelka magazine editor-in-chief Tarun Tejpal, but asked to hold the trial till it directs otherwise.

Advocate Rajiv Gomes, representing Tejpal, had pleaded before the Mapusa court in Goa to put the trial on hold as a petition challenging the framing of charges is already pending before the Bombay High Court at Goa.

Tejpal, former editor-in-chief of Tehelka magazine, is facing charges under IPC sections 341 (wrongful restraint), 342 (wrongful confinement), 376 (rape) and 354-B (criminal assault with intent to disrobe a woman).

He had been arrested on November 30, 2013 by the Crime Branch after his anticipatory bail plea was rejected by the court.

Earlier, the Panaji bench of the Bombay High Court on Tuesday had refused to stay the framing of charges against Tarun Tejpal in a lower court. A series of emails between her, Tejpal and Tehelka's then managing editor Shoma Chaudhary, were leaked and later published by media, said the NDTV report.

Legal experts say if found guilty, Mr Tejpal could be sentenced to at least seven years in jail.

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"They were arguing that the charges be not framed but the high court had clearly not put a stay on the case". In a 2,684-page chargesheet filed before the Goa fast-track court, the police said that Tarun Tejpal assaulted the woman twice.

"The court has now asked the final status report of the High Court proceedings to be submitted on November 21 after which the court will decide on the trial dates", said Tavero.

"I had contended before the Sessions Court that the explanation of the charge (s) to the accused should be deferred because we are hopeful - we are confident - that we will get a discharge from the High Court". Hopefully the case will end and it will not go to trial.

"The judge will now try Tejpal under these sections", he said.

"It has been a positive day for us".