The Investigating Officer (IO) who probed the rape case against former Tehelka Editor, Tarun Tejpal committed several omissions and the prosecution failed to produce crucial evidence including CCTV footage, the Goa court, which acquitted Tejpal, said in its judgment. .Additional Sessions Judge Kshama Joshi had, on May 21, acquitted Tejpal of sexual assault charges alleged by a female colleague.However, the judgment copy became available only on May 25. The Sessions Judge in her verdict, reasoned that the deposition of the prosecutrix showed improvement and material contradictions and also had omissions and change of versions which did not inspire confidence. .The Court opined that there were glaring contradictions in the statements made by the prosecturix and the IO had not questioned the prosecutrix about it.The Court also noted that there were discrepancies in the evidence submitted by the prosecution, which the defence alleged was deliberate. It found that crucial evidence pertaining to CCTV footage was missing and was not produced before the Court by the IO;The statements of certain witnesses was not recorded despite willingness of that witness to depose;Email exchanged between the prosecution and the defence witnesses was located in the Tehelka server but the emails were not procured by the IO during investigation. .On the CCTV footage particularly, the Court noted that the IO gave directions to other investigating officers to download CCTV footage only of the ground floor and second floor and not of the first floor so as to deliberately destroy all traces of CCTV footage of the first floor. "The IO viewed vital CCTV footage of the guest lifts on the first floor and knowing that the said CCTV footage shows the accused and prosecutrix exiting the lift during the relevant two minutes on the first floor and that the same would exonerate the accused and despite the fact that the DVR containing the CCTV footage should have been attached by the IO at the earliest to preserve the crucial footage, deliberately delayed the seizure of the DVR and in the meanwhile destroyed the CCTV footage of first floor, thereby destroying clear proof of the accused's defence," the Court said. .Referring to the fundamental right of the accused, the Court observed that the IO seemed to have committed several omissions while conducting the investigation. The court observed that on the actual alleged crime, the IO failed to ask basic questions to the prosecutrix.The Court also noted the following:No empirical data to show how a button on the lift panel can keep the doors closed when the lift is stationary between floors;No verification on how the buttons on the lift panel could be pressed to facilitate commission of any crime;No report from the company which made the lift to find out the functioning of the lift;No interrogation of the prosecutrix on "what the accused did on the lift panel with his hands during the alleged incident" and how he pressed the lift buttons.The IO had also not asked the basic question as to where the prosecutrix was standing in the lift, the Court further noted. .The Court concluded that the prosecution had failed to discharge the burden of proving guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt and, therefore, acquitted Tejpal. Tejpal was directed to furnish personal bond and surety of Rs. 20,000 in force for 6 months to appear before the higher court as and when notice for appeal against the judgment is filed. .Meanwhile, the State of Goa on Tuesday challenged the order acquitting Tejpal before Goa Bench of Bombay High Court. .Tejpal was accused under charges of rape, assault and wrongful confinement of his former female colleague in the year 2013.He was arrested in November 2013 and later released on bail in July 2014.The trial against Tejpal commenced in 2017. In the meanwhile, he had moved the Bombay High Court for quashing the case against him, claiming that the charges were fabricated.The High Court had dismissed the plea after which he appealed to the Supreme Court.The Supreme Court also refused to interfere and rejected his petition on August 19, 2019.The trial had commenced thereafter culminating in the May 21 judgment.