Tarun Tejpal sexual assault case: Journalists and citizens react
The full force of the law must be brought into its investigation and prosecution. Due regard must be paid to the sensitivity and privacy of the victim who has already been put to grievous suffering.
The Press Club of India described the incident as a slur on the name of Indian journalism and hoped the ‘shocking happening at Tehelka’ wouldn’t deter women from wanting to become journalists.
The Delhi Union of Journalists said, “This is not the time to hide behind technicalities and penances, but to live by the standards it (Tehelka) has set for others. Inward gazing may cleanse the conscience but a crime deserves and must get its punishment. And what Tejpal has done is a crime.”
The Indian Women’s Press Corps said it ‘strongly condemns the sexual misconduct by the editor-in-chief of Tehelka against a young women journalist.’ It said media houses and organisations should take corrective measures, including setting up proactive internal complaints committees for the effective enforcement of the Vishakha Guidelines. It urged Tehelka to set up a probe committee to investigate the complaint
“Citizens have woken up. Earlier such cases would go unreported fearing lack of social, judicial and media support but slowly the mindset is changing, which is a welcomed move. However, even today, the number of sexual harassment and abuse cases is underreported in our country. We, citizens, should come forward and work towards forming a better nation, a nation where the law will prevail and these young women who are reporting such cases openly are showing us the way
— Shailesh Gandhi, former Chief Information Commissioner
The issue is not just about the retaliation that one faces when a complaint of sexual harassment is made. There is more hostility and gender stereotypes that one comes across during the legal journey, making one wonder whether the law really offers a solution. We can have more laws, but does it enable justice delivery? And if not, then is writing and sharing the only way to reconcile to the trauma
— Minakshi Maheshwari, charted accountant
Till now, crimes against women were hidden, but now more women have started coming forward and raising their voice on various platforms. Additionally, even the media is paying more attention to these case. But to change the mindsets of the people who are implementing the law is the need of the hour.
— Poornima Upadhyay, social activist
Earlier, it was said, ‘Women, the world over used to speak the language of silence’, but today we can see the change in people’s thinking (society, family and media), which gives the inner strength to women to not remain silent and stand up for their rights and raise their voice against the injustice. This proactive approach is the just the beginning
— Dr Meenu Thomas, Principal, SIES College of Commerce and Economics