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New Delhi, May 1 (PTI) Following are the top stories at 12:30 PM: NATION: DEL11 VIRUS-LD CASES COVID-19: India records highest-ever 4,01,993 new cases, 3,523 deaths New Delhi: India's daily coronavirus tally crossed the grim milestone of four lakh, while the death toll rose to 2,11,853 with 3,523 fresh fatalities, according to date updated by the Union Health Ministry on Saturday.

DEL9 MHA-SDRF-STATES COVID-19: Centre releases Rs 8,873 cr to states from SDRF New Delhi: The Centre has released Rs 8,873.6 crore to states as the first instalment of the central share of the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) for 2021-22 for various COVID-19 containment measures, including setting up of hospitals and oxygen generation.

DEL12 DL-VACCINATION-PRIVATE HOSPITALS COVID-19 vaccination for people in 18-44 age group begins at some private hospitals New Delhi: Some private hospital chains commenced the COVID-19 immunisation drive for the 18-44 age group at limited centres in the country on Saturday, officials said.

BOM2 GJ-HOSPITAL-LD FIRE Gujarat: 18 coronavirus patients die in Bharuch hospital fire Bharuch: At least 18 coronavirus patients died after a fire broke out at a hospital in Gujarat's Bharuch in the early hours on Saturday.

LEGAL: LGD1 DL-HC-VIRUS-REMDESIVIR-CBI PIL for CBI probe into politicians procuring Remdesivir mentioned in HC New Delhi: A PIL demanding an FIR and CBI probe into claims of politicians being able to procure and distribute Remdesivir, used for treating COVID-19 patients, even as others run pillar to post to get the medicine, was mentioned before the Delhi High Court on Saturday.

FOREIGN: FGN1 VIRUS-US-INDIA-TRAVEL-2NDLD BAN US imposes restrictions on travel from India beginning May 4 Washington: The US has imposed restrictions on travel from India starting on May 4 because of the extraordinarily high COVID-19 caseloads and multiple variants circulating in the country, the White House said. By Lalit K Jha FGN24 VIRUS-US-BIDEN-INDIA Biden asked his administration to provide all assistance to India: Officials Washington: President Joe Biden has asked his administration to provide all assistance to India, which is battling one of the worst outbreaks of COVID-19, and has assured that the US would stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the country, top officials from the two nations have said. By Lalit K Jha. PTI DIV DIV