Tarun Tejpal shares cell with 2 murder accused, 5 others on first night

TejpalTehelka's founder and former editor-in-chief Tarun Tejpal was on Saturday arrested in sexual assault case.

Tehelka founder-editor Tarun Tejpal spent the night with seven accused — two booked for murder, a preventive arrest, and four others booked under the Wildlife Protection Act — at the Panaji police station lock-up on Saturday.

While Grand Hyatt, Bambolim, where the incident is alleged to have taken place, falls under the jurisdiction of Agassaim police station, the lock-up there is reported to be visible from outside. Hence, officials decided to keep him at the well-secured Panaji police station lock-up.

The lock-up, the oldest in Goa, is a small room with no ventilation. It shares its roof with two other rooms — a women's cell and the duty room.

Tejpal entered the lock-up at around 2:30 am, after his medical check-up at the Goa Medical College Hospital. "The only thing he asked for were newspapers, to spread and sleep," said a senior official.

Some of his cellmates were already asleep at that hour. One of the accused, detained as preventive arrest, was let off early morning.

Two others, accused in different cases of murder, have been in the lock-up for four days. The others — Damin Colaso, Lawrence Colaso, Nathalo Fernandes and Santano Colasa — booked under the Wildlife Protection Act have been inside since November 19.

All the seven are from Nuvem village in Margao.

Officials pointed out that with the festive season starting from Monday, the lock-up could see more crowding as drunken brawls are regular offences in Goa during this period.

According to his lawyers, Tejpal's family is sending him home cooked food.

A change of clothes is expected to be given at the Crime Branch, in the presence of officers, everyday.

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