Saturday, November 30, 2013
TEHELKA CASE UPDATE Tehelka's Tarun Tejpal's bail plea is rejected and according to Judge Anuja Prabhudesai's 25-page order: "The statement of the victim and the documents in the form of emails etc., details of which need not be reproduced here, prima facie indicate that the applicant, who was her mentor and father figure, had not only outraged her modesty but had misused his position, betrayed her trust and violated her body." "It has to be borne in mind that delay in lodging the report is not necessarily fatal and can always be explained. The yardstick of unexplained delay in filing an FIR, which usually goes in favour of the accused, cannot be applied in cases involving sexual offences. The victims of such crime undergo physical as well as mental trauma and humiliation. Their reputation, dignity, honour, future prospects and financial security are at stake and often the victims and their family members are subjected to social ridicule. These circumstances often lead to delay in reporting the incident. "In my considered view, the veracity of the complainant or the statement of the victim cannot be doubted on the ground of delay." "The applicant cannot be heard to say that the subsequent conduct of the victim is contrary to the allegations made in the complaint to the Managing Editor and the insinuations that the victim was a consenting party or that the alleged act was only a lighthearted bantering cannot be accepted." "The material on record prima facie indicates that the applicant is involved in committing acts which constitute offences under Section 354A (outraging the modesty of a woman) and 376 (2)(K) (custodial rape) of IPC. This, being the case, there can be no dispute that the offences alleged are of serious nature. The gravity of the offence, though not the sole criteria, is one of the essential factors, which would disentitle the applicant for bail." "The applicant has nowhere stated in his application that the victim has made the accusation under political pressure or at the behest of any political party. There is no material on record that the applicant is prosecuted as a pre-planned conspiracy or that the investigation is biased or tainted. As such, subsequent comments, statements, or acts of any political party are not relevant considerations for deciding the application" "The material on record prima facie reveal that the applicant by his act, which he has termed as lighthearted banter, had subjected the victim to ignominy, humiliation and disgrace. Hence, the applicant cannot claim bail on the ground that his arrest would curtail his personal liberty or will cause ignominy, humiliation and disgrace." "Considering the totality of the circumstances, in my considered view the applicant is not entitled for bail. Hence, the bail application is hereby dismissed." "Needless to state that the object of the women-specific laws can be achieved only by proper implementation of laws and thorough investigation of such crimes and such thorough investigation would include custodial interrogation." "The offences alleged are crimes against the women and society in general and, if not properly investigated, can destroy the psyche of women and basic fabric of the society. In my considered view, offences of such nature fall in a different category and in the societal interest justify the custodial interrogation."
Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Dear All, This is in connection with the Tehelka's cover-up Act. Lately, the Managing Editor Shoma Choudhury has been resigned. I've attached the full text of her resignation letter. Still Tehelka has to go long way to clean the mess it created. Ms. Shoma's Letter Dear All, This has been a damaging time for all associated with Tehelka. Since the devastating allegation was first brought to my notice on 18th November, I have taken a series of actions in response to this complaint. To my mind, I acted on instant outrage and solidarity for our colleague as a woman and co-worker. After the first steps to immediately address her expressed needs, the process of setting up the anti-sexual harassment committee was begun. There were only two days to act on the complaint before the story broke in the press. Post this, things have been misconstrued and have snowballed exponentially in the media, based on half-facts and selective leaks. In the next stage, once the committee was formed, the law would have taken its course according to the findings and recommendations. Over the past week, I have been accused of an attempt to "cover-up" and for not standing by my feminist positions. While I accept that I could have done many things differently and in a more measured way, I reject the allegations of a cover-up because in no way could the first actions that were taken be deemed suppression of any kind. As for my feminist positions, I believe I acted in consonance with them by giving my colleague's account precedence over everything else. However, despite this, as a result of what's transpired over the past few days my integrity has repeatedly been questioned by people from our fraternity and, in fact, by the public at large. I would like to take cognizance of this. I have worked hard for Tehelka for many years and what we have stood for is very dear to me and I hold it in high esteem. I do not want questions raised about my integrity to tarnish the image of Tehelka, which it has done in the past week. Therefore, I resign as Managing Editor with immediate effect. There are many readers and colleagues who have believed in me and expressed their faith through this very difficult time. I am deeply grateful to them. I will come in to office to close the issue and do the necessary handovers. I cannot express how painful this is for me. It has never been a part of me to give up midway through a challenge. I would have liked to continue at Tehelka to see us through this dark time, but I am no longer sure whether my presence is harming or helping Tehelka. I deeply regret any inadequacies or lack of clarity I may have displayed in my leadership. Shoma
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
Wait...wait...and wait...it's not Tamil or Sanskrit. Not even Latin or Greek - considered as fitting candidates for this claim. On this interesting subject (History of languages), Gautam Naik of Wall Street Journal had written wonderful article. (Ref: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052748704547604576262572791243528). The evolution of human language is one of the fascinating aspect to study. It gives valid insights about our culture, tradition and so many details about our life. I personally request everyone should read this news time to know about the origin of all languages. Srini
Monday, November 25, 2013
Committing one after another mistakes, folks at Tehelka are making more trouble from themselves. The second-in-command of Tehelka - Shoma Choudhury (a woman !) get involved in this heinous act. The accused Tarun Tejpal is filed anticipatory bail and Shoma trying to cover-up as it nothing happened. They simply think, we the people are fools. In this moment, The Hindu gave one of the finest editorial on this subject Tehelka kind of self-attested moral police should be allowed to function. In fact, the police should file FIR also against Shoma and all the accused should be sent to jail. We have to thank the courageous act of the victim - the woman journalist and her single-minded pursuit of seeking justice at any cost. Hats off.
Friday, November 22, 2013
Carlsen the New World Champion I think after today's game, the chess prodigy Magnus Carlsen will enter into the history book with his winning (even a draw in today's 10th game is enough for him to get 6.5 points overall) against our Viswanathan Anand. Started as an underdog Anand played initially very well. But his defensive approach didn't yield any result. On the contrary, Carlsen's "play-to-win" attitude gave this wonderful opportunity. On coming close in two games, Anand didn't capitalize it. And finally paid the heavy price of losing his champion status to the man who almost 21 years younger to him. Overall the tournament provided wonderful entertainment to the sports lovers across the world. Touted as the tournament of 21st century, this is one of the finest ever tournament organized by Tamil Nadu State Government. Soon, you can see the animated games of Anand vs Carlsen matches in my blog "Open School." The production is underway in full swing. I hope this is a learning experience for the young kids who is practicing Chess.
Thursday, November 21, 2013
Whistleblower's Trouble Tehelka's Mumbai Correspondent accused its head honcho Tarun Tejpal of sexual assault during the recently held Think Summit (organized by Tehelka) in Goa. This is disgraceful event. From the starting point, Tehelka has always been followed the unconventional approach in reporting and publishing stories. He may be apologized and step down but that is not acceptable. The culprit Tarun should be punished for his heinous act. Without accepting his diabolic act, he is trying to project this issue as 'consensual sex" or "drunk banter issue" because during the occurrence of this event both are in drunken state. On any account, the law enforcement authorities and police should not allow this case to become trivial issue. It is serious and dangerous. And It is bad for everyone. Let us all united to send this maverick behind bars.
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
This is connected to the gruesome attack of a woman inside ATM at Bangalore yesterday. A few preventive steps could've been saved the victim in this case. First mistake is the woman who is refused to oblige. When you are trapped inside the closed room on any account you should confront the assailant. This act will provocative. Instead, she should've simply noted the person's identity and reveal it to the police later. On the bank's part, why didn't they appoint the security guard? Why the doors at the top is in unlocked condition. They have to make custom-made doors with some lock on top. In that way, except the glass door, there is no other hiding option will be available. So, the attacker normally won't dare to do. Most importantly, the incident was reported by some school-children almost after 2 to 3 hours. Till that why no one from the bank monitor the CCTV footage. The CCTV footages should be monitored on real-time. Otherwise there is no meaning of installing such a device inside the ATM. On any account, alongside the real culprit, the bank also should hold responsible for this act. Most of the times, the lawless thugs are exploiting the loophole in the system. A strongly condemnable act and police should capture the culprit immediately.
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