In November 2013, Tejpal was accused by a reporter of sexual assault during Think in Goa.
He admitted “misconduct”, and offered to take six months leave, as “penance”, from Tehelka. The case is still in process.
This received intense public attention and media scrutiny especially because Tejpal and his magazine had previously been involved in highlighting the issue of sexual violence in India, including in a special issue on the topic in February of the year. Police in the state of Goa, where the incident took place, filed a First Information Report (FIR) which listed charges, including rape, against him.
A non-bailable warrant was issued against him by the Goa Police. Consequently, he was arrested by Goa police on 30 November 2013. On 1 July 2014, Supreme Court granted him bail and asked him to submit his passport to the court.
The trial began in September 2017, and has been lengthened by Tejpal’s appeal to the Supreme Court that the charges be quashed. The court rejected his plea in August 2019, sent the trial back to the lower court, which it directed to complete in six months.The Goa sessions court deferred the judgement to May 19, 2021. On 21 May 2021, he was acquitted of all charges.