HIGHLIGHTS AT 1 PM

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New Delhi, Feb 19 (PTI) Following are the top stories at 1 pm: Top stories: FGN22 NASA-4THLD MARS-LANDING NASA's Perseverance rover lands on Mars, will search for signs of life Washington: After a nearly seven month journey through space, Perseverance -- the largest and the most advanced rover NASA has ever sent to another world -- successfully touched down on the surface of Mars on Friday in a nail-biting landing that marks its first step in the search for signs of ancient microbial life on the Red Planet.

FGN18 CHINA-INDIA-PLA-2NDLD CASULATIES China officially admits 5 military officers, soldiers killed in Galwan Valley clash with Indian Army Beijing: Five Chinese military officers and soldiers were killed in the fierce clash with the Indian Army in the Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh in June last year, the People's Liberation Army (PLA) officially acknowledged for the first time on Friday. By K J M Varma DEL16 VIRUS-2NDLD CASES COVID-19: India records 13,193 new cases, 97 fresh fatalities New Delhi: Daily new cases of COVID-19 in the country climbed to over 13,000 after 19 days taking India's tally of cases to 1,09,63,394, with experts attributing the rise to increased economic activity and complacency among people.

National: DEL17 DEF-SINOINDIA MILITARY TALKS Military commanders of India, China to hold talks on Saturday New Delhi: Senior commanders of Indian and Chinese armies will hold a fresh round of high-level talks on Saturday to take forward the disengagement process after both sides completed withdrawal of troops and military hardware from the North and South banks of Pangong lake in eastern Ladakh, official sources said on Friday.

DEL12 PM-AUS HACKATHON Strong India-Australia partnership will play key role in shaping post-COVID world: PM Modi New Delhi: The strong India-Australia partnership will play an important role in shaping the post-COVID world, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday and expressed confidence that the two countries would take the lead in providing circular economy solutions.

CAL8 WB-VISVABHARATI-PM Modi hails Visva Bharati, says it should help farmers, artisans find global markets Visva Bharati (WB): Extolling Visva Bharati for its inspiring legacy, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday asked its students to help farmers and artisans in villages adopted by the institution find global markets for their products.

DEL15 CBI-COAL CBI searches underway in four districts of West Bengal in coal pilferage scam case New Delhi: CBI searches were underway on Friday at 13 locations in four districts of poll-bound West Bengal in connection with the coal pilferage scam, officials said. DEL11 JK-LD ENCOUNTER Three militants, policeman killed in encounters in Kashmir Srinagar: Three unidentified militants and a policeman were killed in two separate encounters in Budgam and Shopian districts of Jammu and Kashmir, officials said on Friday.

CAL7 WB-MAMATA-NITI AAYOG Mamata likely to skip Niti Aayog meeting on Feb 20 Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is likely to skip the Niti Aayog's governing council meeting to be chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 20, sources said on Friday.

BOM2 MH-VIRUS-BIRTHDAY-FIR Maha: 500 booked for flouting COVID-19 norms at birthday party Thane: Police have registered a case against around 500 people for allegedly violating the COVID-19 norms by gathering for birthday celebration at Dombivli in Maharashtra's Thane district, officials said.

Legal: LGD8 DL-HC-TOOLKIT Toolkit case: Some media coverage of FIR against Disha Ravi sensational, prejudicial, says HC New Delhi: The Delhi High Court Friday said certain media coverage of investigation in the FIR against climate activist Disha Ravi for her alleged involvement in sharing a toolkit backing farmers' protest, indicates 'sensationalism and prejudicial reporting', but declined to order removal of any such content at this stage.

LGD1 SC-NCLAT-REMARKS SC expunges remarks made against 3 sitting members of NCLAT New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday expunged remarks made against three sitting members of the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) by a bench headed by acting chairperson Justice Bansi Lal Bhat.

Foreign: FGN24 US-IMMIGRATION-2NDLD BILL Biden admn introduces ambitious immigration bill in Congress;Indian IT professionals to be benefited Washington, Feb 19 (PTI) In a major move that will benefit hundreds and thousands of Indian IT professionals in America, the Biden administration has introduced an ambitious immigration bill in Congress which among other things proposes to eliminate the per-country cap for employment-based green cards. By Lalit K Jha FGN19 US-2NDLD IRAN US says it is willing to sit down for talks with Iran and other nations on nuclear deal Washington, Feb 19 (PTI) The Biden administration has said it is willing to sit down for talks with Iran and world powers to discuss a diplomatic way forward on Tehran's atomic programme, in the first major step aimed at reviving the 2015 nuclear deal that was close to falling apart after the previous Trump regime withdrew from it. By Lalit K Jha. PTI AQS AQS