SC rejects Tejpal's plea to quash sexual assault charge

Tejpal had relied upon the CCTV footages and WhatsApp messages to claim that he was framed in the matter. (DH File Photo)

The Supreme Court on Monday rejected a plea by the founder of news magazine 'Tehelka', Tarun Tejpal for quashing charges of sexual assault made by his junior colleague in Goa in 2013.

A bench of Justices Arun Mishra, M R Shah and B R Gavai said the charges were serious and constituted the "morally abhorrent offence".

The court dismissed the petition by Tejpal against the Bombay High Court's order declining to interfere into the matter.

The top court asked Goa court to complete the trial within six months, saying there was already a delay in the case.

Tejpal had relied upon the CCTV footages and WhatsApp messages to claim that he was framed in the matter.

The court had on August 19 reserved its order on the special leave petition filed on February 15, 2018.

On Monday, the judgement was pronounced by Justice Shah on behalf of the bench.

The Bombay High Court at Goa had on December 20, 2017 dismissed Tejpal's plea seeking quashing of charges against him.

The trial court in Mapusa town of Goa had framed charges against Tejpal under various sections of IPC, including sexual harassment and provisions related to rape.

Tejpal is alleged to have sexually assaulted a former colleague inside the elevator of a five-star hotel in Goa in 2013.

He was arrested on November 30, 2013, by the Crime Branch after his anticipatory bail plea was rejected by the court. He has been released on bail by the Supreme Court on May 2014.

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