Mind you, I am not a supporter of the “Guilty until proven” style of discourse neither I am one for picking up placards to condemn someone before they’ve been conclusively proven to be guilty but trying to dilute the depravity of rape or sexual assault by terming it as a “grave error” just cause the accused in question is an influential, apparent voice and messiah of liberal voices. Yesterday, Mid Day decided to enlighten us on how Tarun Tejpal is a man that needs to be let off so that liberals have a voice, and how rape and sexual assault are just mere mistakes if the perpetrator is someone of such glorious disposition and poise, so much so that despite being a married man and part of the niche upper class, he went ahead with a deplorable act that he knew he could get away with. It’s been 3 years now and Tejpal is currently out on bail, about to use the wealth he has amassed through shoddy journalism to organize another one of those “high-profile fests for the country’s intelligentsia”. The article’s casual usage of the word almost makes you start casting aspersions about its connotation, since being part of the fabled “intelligentsia” shouldn’t rob one off their sensitivity and conscience. Forgive us for our ignorance, since we never really realized that intelligent thought was exclusive to a cult of affluent, self-entitled pseudo-intellectuals who wouldn’t know their derriere from their elbow if it all came down to that.
Yes, we can’t pass off a stoic judgment on whether Tejpal committed the crime or not as that is for the judiciary to decide but it doesn’t hold one in good stead to big up someone who has been accused of sexual harassment and it is even more preposterous to water down the nature of such crimes to the extent of making them seem almost dismissible. The piece in question talks about Tejpal, much revered by Mid Day, being “rehabilitated” probably in the aftermath of him having to bother about morality more than he’s used to. Possibly no other sexual harassment accused has been hoisted to an iconic status by our society’s otherwise liberal and progressive voices than Tarun Tejpal, some of these being prominent feminists.
All those elaborate, idealistic ideologues in the bin. If this was a normal person being accused of this “grave mistake” it would’ve been Tejpal’s own liberal friends who would’ve cause a more brouhaha than he himself is facing. The Tarun Tejpal fiasco isn’t just a case of sexual harassment but also signifies how ideologues are usually traded off in favor of personal interests or nepotism and sheer hypocrisy can often take precedence over the ideals they pretend to uphold. As was discussed in a previous article of mine, actions define ideologies, not dictionary meanings.
Believe in what is right and not in cult based convictions.