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Indian editor Tarun Tejpal claims innocence over rape charge involving a colleague

Published on Feb 18, 2014 5:14 PM
Indian magazine editor Tarun Tejpal is escorted by police officials from a courthouse after being remanded in police custody in Panaji on Dec 1, 2013.  -- FILE PHOTO: AFP

PANAJI, India (AFP) - A leading Indian editor charged with raping a colleague insisted on Tuesday that he was innocent, after a court deferred his plea for bail in the case which has dominated local media.

Tarun Tejpal, founder and editor of top investigative magazine Tehelka, has been in custody since his arrest in late November over the alleged incident in a hotel lift in the southern state of Goa.

On Monday, Tejpal was charged with a series of offences including sexual harassment, outraging modesty and rape, in one of the highest-profile cases since India toughened its rape laws last year.

"The charge sheet against me is out of political vendetta. I am innocent," the 50-year old told reporters outside the court in Goa's capital Panaji, after his bail hearing was deferred until March 4 and he was taken back into custody.

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