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SC declines bail plea of Kerala youth

The Supreme Court on Friday refused a plea to immediately grant interim bail to Thwaha Fasal, a Kerala youth accused under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) of Maoist links.

“Nothing at the moment,” Justice Navin Sinha, heading a Bench, also comprising Justice Subhash Reddy, said.

The prima facie remark from the judge was in response to an oral request made by senior advocate R. Basant, appearing for Fasal, for interim bail.

Justice Sinha said the Union of India has filed an appeal in the apex court against the Kerala High Court’s decision not to interfere in the grant of bail to Fasal’s co-accused, Allan Shuaib.

The court said both Fasal’s plea for bail and the Centre’s appeal against Shuaib’s bail have to be heard jointly and in detail.

“One case [of Fasal] is about relief in the form of bail and the other one [Union’s appeal] is for cancellation of bail in the same matter. We have to hear both petitions together,” Justice Sinha noted.

Hearing on August 24

The Bench listed the case for hearing on August 24 while declining Mr. Basant’s repeated pleas to have it in a week.

On July 23, Fasal’s case had come up before another Bench led by Justice U.U. Lalit. In that hearing, Additional Solicitor General S.V. Raju, for the Union, said that a “lot of literature concerning revolution, violence and secessionist struggle in Jammu and Kashmir” were seized from Fasal. He had appealed to the apex court for bail after the High Court reversed the National Investigation Agency court’s decision to grant him bail. Justice Lalit’s Bench agreed to hear both Fasal and the Union’s case against Shuaib on July 30.

Fasal, through his lawyer, on July 23, submitted that his client was a young man of 23 years and a journalism student with no financial backing. His lawyer had read out the titles of some of the books arraigned as evidence against Fasal, including a book on the caste system, Rosa Luxemburg’s critique of Lenin and Hello Bastar: The Untold Story of Indian Maoist Movement by journalist Rahul Pandita. Mr. Giri informed the court that pamphlets calling for conservation of the Western Ghats were already available in the public domain.

“Apart from these, was there anything else said by the witnesses?” Justice Lalit had asked Mr. Raju.


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Printable version | Sep 17, 2021 7:53:23 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/sc-declines-bail-plea-of-kerala-youth/article35624156.ece

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