Almost a week after a young Tehelka journalist lodged a formal complaint with the magazine’s managing editor Shoma Chaudhury alleging that her boss, Tarun Tejpal, had sexually assaulted her, the internal complaints committee (ICC) is yet to start working on the case.
Chaudhury had last week announced the setting up of the committee under noted feminist author Urvashi Butalia. The National Commission for Women (NCW) had last Friday sent a notice to Chaudhury seeking details of the constitution of the committee and if it has become operational. Chaudhury was given 24 hours to respond.
“Till Monday evening, we have not heard anything from Tehelka’s managing editor,” Shamina Shafiq, NCW member in charge of Goa, told HT.
Shafiq said that she had spoken to Chaudhury during the day and was assured by the latter that a response would be sent today.
Setting up of the complaints committee is a mandatory requirement under the Sexual Harassment at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act. According to the landmark law, the four-member committee has to be headed by a senior woman employee of the organisation. One of the member should be from outside.
Some Tehelka staffers have also confirmed that they are not aware who the other members are in the committee or if it has become functional.
Meanwhile, another NCW member Nirmala Samant Prabhavalkar said that the commission has spoken to Mumbai Police. The latter told NCW that the victim would be taken to Panaji on Tuesday where her statement would be recorded.
Shoma requests staff to show restraint
new delhi: On Monday, Tehelka managing editor Shoma Chaudhury had a meeting with the magazine’s editorial staff in which she is understood to have asked them to restrain themselves from revealing details about the organisation to the media. Sources said she disclosed the entire sequence of event since the time the victim had lodged a formal complaint. Meanwhile, another Tehelka staffer, photo editor Ishan Tankha resigned from his post on Tuesday.
The magazine’s Pakistan columnist Ayesha Siddiqua has also decided to discontinue her column. This takes the tally of senior editors who have resigned since the news of the magazine founding editor Tarun Tejpal allegedly sexually assaulting a junior colleague broke out to five. The others who have quit include consulting editor Jay Mazoomdaar, assistant editor Revati Laul and literary editor Shougat Dasgupta.