Mid-Day Column Calls Tarun Tejpal’s Alleged Sexual Assault ‘Grave Error’; Receives Backlash

In her column in the Mid-Day, a tabloid restricted to the Mumbai area, Malavika Sangghvi takes on the case of Tarun Tejpal.

In case you have forgotten, Tejpal was accused of sexual assault by a woman colleague in 2013 following which he stepped down from his post as Editor of Tehelka.

He was subsequently arrested and is now out on bail.

Before we go any further, read this profound piece by Sangghvi which was published by the tabloid on June 9.


There are a three things worth of note in the piece.

1. “The relentless media campaign that shredded the once darling of the intelligentsia could be regarded as excessive.”

2. “No doubt Tejpal had committed a grave error.”

3. “Was there really need for such a vociferous dragging through the coals?”


The three salient points have come under fire from social media users and the intelligentsia.


In his strongly worded criticism of the Mid-Day piece, Ramanathan S. writes in ‘The News Minute’ that the article is a “shameful, insensitive, elitist, obnoxious and anti-women ‘column’ justifying the ‘brouhaha’ and ‘grave error’”.

“And even if this is your idea of sarcasm, Mid-Day, you did a pathetic job with it,” he writes.

Slamming the culture that defends elitist rapists, Kalpana Sharma writes in the Scroll that “comments like this remind us that this is how those with power, or connections, can get away with crimes”.




Both Sharma and Ramanathan point to the case of TERI chief R.K. Pachauri, who despite being charged with sexual harassment held on to his position for many months.

“People of his class simply refused to accept the gravity of the crime with which he was charged,” writes Sharma.

Both criticize the attempt at urging “liberal voices” to defend Tejpal. “This has nothing to do with liberalism, and yet campaigns like these make the liberal edifice weak,” writes Ramanathan.

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