Goa Police reject his request for more time to appear

Sarika Faldesai, Judicial Magistrate First Class in Panaji, Goa, on Thursday evening issued a non-bailable arrest warrant against Tehelka Editor-in-Chief Tarun Tejpal, accused of sexually assaulting a journalist.

Police approached the magistrate with the request in this regard after Mr. Tejpal failed to appear before them by 3 p.m. , despite being summoned.

Police rejected Mr. Tejpal’s request for more time to appear before them as per the summons served on him on Wednesday night.

Late on Thursday evening, his lawyers informed the police that he would join the investigation on Friday.

Three hours ahead of the deadline, Mr. Tejpal sent a fax message, seeking exemption from appearance till Saturday on the plea that he needed time to travel to Goa.

“However, considering the seriousness of the crime, the investigating officer did not accept the request,’’ Deputy Inspector-General of Police O.P. Mishra said.

It is learnt that Mr. Tejpal is planning to move a bail application in a sessions court in Goa. It is likely to be moved on Friday morning before a single-judge Bench (criminal matters). According to legal sources, Mr. Tejpal may also move a plea for transfer of the case out of Goa.

Shoma resigns

Earlier in the day, managing editor of Tehelka Shoma Chaudhury resigned from the post, saying she did not want questions raised about her integrity to tarnish the image of the weekly.

(With inputs from Alok Deshpande in Panaji and Shubhomoy Sikdar and Anita Joshua in New Delhi)

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