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New Delhi, Apr 26 (PTI) Following are the top stories at 5 pm: NATION DEL9 VIRUS-LD CASES COVID-19: India logs record 3.52 lakh new cases, 2,812 fatalities New Delhi: With 3,52,991 people testing positive for coronavirus infection in a day, the highest so far, India's total tally of COVID-19 cases has climbed to 1,73,13,163 while active cases have crossed the 28-lakh mark, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Monday.

DEL43 VIRUS-PM-RAWAT Armed forces recall retired medical staff to work to battle COVID-19 pandemic New Delhi: All medical personnel of the armed forces who have retired or have taken pre-mature retirement in the last two years are being recalled to work in COVID-19 facilities within proximity of their present place of residence, the government said on Monday.

DEL18 DL-VIRUS-KEJRIWAL-LD VACCINE Free COVID-19 vaccine in Delhi to all above 18: CM Kejriwal New Delhi: The Delhi government will provide free COVID-19 vaccines to all those above 18 years of age in the city for which purchase of 1.34 crore doses has been approved, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Monday.

DEL30 PM-JAPAN-LD TALKS Fighting COVID-19 together features in talks between Modi, Japanese PM New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday discussed with his Japanese counterpart Yoshihide Suga the COVID-19 situation as the two leaders underscored the importance of close cooperation between their countries to overcome the challenges posed by the pandemic.

DEL17 RAHUL-VACCINE Rahul Gandhi demands free COVID vaccine for all New Delhi: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday said all citizens should get COVID vaccines for free and the country should not be made a 'victim of the BJP's system'.

CAL9 WB-POLL-MAMATA Mamata welcomes Madras HC order, demands withdrawal of central forces who may be infected with Covid Kolkata: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday demanded withdrawal of central forces to contain covid spread in West Bengal in the next phase of polling, while welcoming the Madras High Courts observations that the Election Commission could not avoid blame for the spread of Covid.

MDS14 TN-OXYGEN-2ND LD STERLITE TN to allow Sterlite to produce oxygen, bar on operating other units Chennai: An all-party meeting convened by the Tamil Nadu government on Monday resolved to allow Vedanta's Sterlite Industries in Tuticorin to produce oxygen for a four-month period amid surging covid cases, paving the way for the partial reopening of the copper smelter closed in 2018 over pollution concerns.

LEGAL LGD8 DL-HC-VIRUS-LD TESTING Set up more COVID-19 testing centres, sample collection infrastructure: HC to Delhi govt New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Monday requested the AAP government to set up more testing centres in view of the rise in COVID-19 cases in the national capital which is recording around 24,000 fresh infections for the last few days.

LGM2 TN-VIRUS-HC-LD EC EC 'singularly' responsible for Covid-19 second wave, says HC Chennai: The Madras High Court on Monday castigated the Election Commission over the COVID-19 second wave in the country, holding it 'singularly' responsible for the spread, called it the 'the most irresponsible institution' and even said its officials may be booked under murder charges.

LGD20 DL-HC-VIRUS-LD OXYGEN Expect Rajasthan govt to honour orders on no obstruction to medical oxygen tankers, says Delhi HC New Delhi: The Delhi High Court Monday said it expects the Rajasthan government to honour the orders not to obstruct cryogenic tankers carrying medical oxygen for COVID-19 patients to other states observing that any obstruction at this stage will tantamount to endangering hundreds of human lives.

FOREIGN FGN13 VIRUS-US-INDIA-LD VACCINE US to immediately provide raw materials required for manufacturing Covishield in India; sending life-saving supplies Washington: The US has assured India that it will immediately provide the specific raw materials required for manufacturing the Covishield vaccine, with a top White House official saying that the Biden administration was 'working around the clock' to deploy all resources and supplies to bolster the country's fight against the deadly COVID-19 spike. By Lalit K Jha FGN15 VIRUS-CHINA-INDIA-CARGO-FLIGHTS China's state-run airline suspends cargo flights rushing COVID-19 medical supplies to India Beijing: China's state-run Sichuan Airlines has suspended all its cargo flights to India for 15 days, causing major disruption to private traders' efforts to procure the much-needed oxygen concentrators and other medical supplies from China despite Beijing offering 'support and assistance' to the country to deal with the latest surge of COVID-19 cases. By K J M Varma FGN21 VIRUS-INDIA-PICHAI-LD NADELLA Google, Microsoft’s Indian-American CEOs pledge support in India’s fight against COVID-19 Houston/Washington: Google CEO Sundar Pichai and his Microsoft counterpart Satya Nadella have assured help to India as the country grapples with a ravaging coronavirus crisis that has put enormous pressure on its hospitals due to a shortage of beds, oxygen and medical supplies. By Seema Hakhu Kachru/ Lalit K Jha FGN8 LD OSCARS 'Nomadland' wins best picture at Oscars Los Angeles: 'Nomadland', Chloe Zhao's meditative drama about grief and finding solace outside the traditional structure of a family, won best picture Oscar at the 93rd Acamdey Awards with Zhao becoming the first woman of colour to win best director. PTI CK