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Indian editor charged with rape

Police file rape and sexual abuse charges against Tehelka editor Tarun Tejpal.

Last updated: 17 Feb 2014 10:00
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Tejpal has been in custody since November 30 when a judge rejected his bail plea [Reuters]

Police in India have filed rape and sexual abuse charges against the editor of an Indian magazine known for exposing abuses of power.

Police also noted on Monday's charge sheet that Tehelka Editor Tarun Tejpal had tried to evade arrest after being accused by a young female colleague of sexually assaulting her in a hotel elevator during a conference in early November.

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The woman said Tejpal assaulted her twice in a hotel elevator, on November 7 and 8 when the magazine was hosting its annual conference of Indian leaders, newsmakers and celebrities.

The woman's duties at the conference involved escorting Robert De Niro and his daughter to events.

As the allegations became public, Tejpal first apologised for "a bad lapse of judgment, an awful misreading of the situation" and said he was stepping down for six months. Later, he described the sexual encounter as consensual and fleeting.

Tejpal came under investigation after the woman told the magazine's managing editor about the alleged assault. The woman has not been named in line with Indian laws protecting identities in sexual assault cases.

The allegations stunned many in India, in part because Tejpal is the face of a publication that has pushed Indian society to vanquish corruption and confront the scourge of sexual violence.

Tejpal has been in custody in the southern resort state of Goa since November 30, when a judge rejected his bail petition.

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