The Guild has also sought a formal response from DNA Founding Editor Gautam Adhikari over the charges of sexual misconduct against him.

Editors Guild of India suspends MJ Akbar Tarun Tejpal over Me Too allegations
news Me Too Thursday, December 13, 2018 - 08:56

The Editors Guild of India on Wednesday night suspended journalist-turned-politician MJ Akbar and former Tehelka editor-in-chief Tarun Tejpal as members over charges of sexual harassment and sexual assault against them. The Guild has also decided to write to DNA’s founding editor Gautam Adhikari seeking a formal response to the charges of sexual misconduct levelled against him.

“It has concurred with the majority view that Mr Akbar should be suspended from the Guild till such time that the court case he has filed is concluded. Using the same logic, the Office-bearers decided that Mr Tejpal too should be suspended from the Guild,” the journalists' organisation said in a statement.  

Around 20 women, who were MJ Akbar’s former colleagues, have accused the former minister and BJP MP of sexual harassment and sexual misconduct during his tenure as a journalist. Akbar stepped down as the Minister of State for External Affairs in October. The allegations were first levelled by journalist Priya Ramani, against whom he later filed a defamation case.

Former Tehelka editor-in-chief Tarun Tejpal has been charged with raping a junior colleague in Goa in 2013 and is facing trial at a Goa court.

A big row had erupted on Twitter last month after the Guild shared an updated members list which also featured Akbar and Tejpal.

“The Editors Guild of India (EGI) had sought the views of its Executive Committee (EC) on what action should be taken against Mr M.J. Akbar, a dormant member at present and one of its past presidents, Mr Tarun Tejpal and Mr Gautam Adhikari in light of the charges of sexual misconduct levelled against them by several women journalists. A majority of the EC members suggested that the membership of Mr Akbar should be suspended,” the Guild added in its statement.

Meanwhile, the Guild has decided to wait for a formal response from Gautam Adhikari on the charges levelled against him. Adhikari, the founding editor of DNA Mumbai and former executive editor of the Times of India, has been accused of kissing at least three women without their consent. He resigned as a senior fellow of the Center for American Progress (CAP) after the allegations.

Show us some love and support our journalism by becoming a TNM Member - Click here.