The Supreme Court on Thursday granted bail to Thwaha Fasal, a journalism student from Kerala, accused under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act for allegedly having Maoist links, Bar and Bench reported.

The bench of Justices Ajay Rastogi and AS Oka set aside a Kerala High Court judgement, which had cancelled a special court’s order granting bail to Fasal.

The Supreme Court also reaffirmed the bail of Alan Shuhaib, a law student and Fasal’s co-accused in the case. The special National Investigation Agency court had granted bail to Shuhaib as well.

The Kerala High Court had upheld Shuhaib’s bail order, but the National Investigation Agency had challenged the verdict in the Supreme Court.

The two students had been arrested in November 2019 for having alleged links with Maoist groups that have been banned, according to Live Law. In September last year, a National Investigation Agency court in Kochi granted bail to both the accused holding that there was “rational and reasonable doubt” on the prima facie case against them.

The court had noted that possession of books on Communist ideology, Maoism and class struggle, which the NIA had produced as evidence, did not prove anything adverse against the accused.

The NIA then challenged the verdict in the Kerala High Court. In January, the High Court upheld Suhaib’s bail plea, but cancelled Fasal’s order.

The High Court took note of Suhaib’s young age and psychiatric condition, as he had been diagnosed with depression. The court also said that the materials seized by the NIA from Suhaib were “less serious” than those produced against Thwaha, Live Law reported.

Thwaha had challenged the High Court’s order seeking bail from the Supreme Court. Meanwhile, the NIA sought to overturn the bail granted to Suhaib.

On Thursday, the Supreme Court restored the special NIA court’s judgement, effectively granting bail to both Thwaha and Suhaib.