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New Delhi, Dec 16 (PTI) Following are the top stories at 5.15 pm.

NATION DEL17 DL-FARMERS-LETTER-GOVT Stop holding parallel talks with other farmer bodies: Protesting farmer unions to govt New Delhi: An umbrella body of 40 farmer unions protesting against the new agri laws wrote to the Centre on Wednesday, asking it to stop holding 'parallel talks' with other farmer bodies over the contentious legislations.

DEL19 PM-LD VIJAY DIWAS PM lights 'Swarnim Vijay Mashaal' to start 50th anniversary year celebrations of 1971 war win New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday lit the 'Swarnim Vijay Mashaal' from the eternal flame of the National War Memorial here, marking the beginning of the 50th anniversary year celebrations of India's victory over Pakistan in 1971.

DEL24 CONG-LD VIJAY DIWAS 1971 win over Pak: Rahul says it was time when neighbours feared violating India's borders New Delhi: The Congress on Wednesday lauded the armed forces and Indira Gandhi’s 'lion-hearted leadership' for India's victory over Pakistan in the 1971 war, with Rahul Gandhi saying it was a time when neighbouring countries recognised the mettle of the Indian prime minister and feared violating our borders.

BOM12 MH-FARMERS-RAUT Farm laws row can be solved in 5 minutes if PM steps in: Raut Mumbai: The issues flagged by agitating farmers can be solved in five minutes if Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself steps in, Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut said on Wednesday.

CAL9 DEF-INTRUSION-LD CHAUHAN No intrusions, major faceoffs in Eastern Command area since Ladakh crisis: Chauhan Kolkata: Eastern Army Commander Lt Gen Anil Chauhan on Wednesday said there have been no intrusions or major face-offs in the area of responsibility of the Eastern Command since the Ladakh standoff between Indian troops and China's PLA.

CAL8 WB-SUVENDU-RESIGN Suvendu Adhikari resigns as Trinamool Congress MLA Kolkata: Rebel Trinamool Congress leader Suvendu Adhikari on Wednesday submitted his resignation as an MLA to the West Bengal assembly secretary, party sources said.

DEL44 UP-LD AMU-PM PM Modi to attend Aligarh Muslim University's centenary celebrations Aligarh (UP): Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be the chief guest at the centenary celebrations of the Aligarh Muslim University via video link on December 22, an official statement said.

DEL13 VIRUS-LD CASES COVID-19: India records 26,382 new infections, 387 more fatalities New Delhi: India's COVID-19 caseload rose to 99.32 lakh with 26,382 infections being reported in a day, while the number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 94.56 lakh, according to data updated by the Union Health Ministry on Wednesday.

LEGAL LGD14 SC-FARMERS-LD PROTEST Farmers protest: SC indicates constituting a committee to resolve deadlock New Delhi: The Supreme Court Wednesday indicated that it may form a committee having representatives of the government and farmer unions across the country to resolve the deadlock over farmers protesting at several roads near Delhi borders against the three new agri laws saying 'it may become a national issue'.

LGD11 SC-LD MAINTENANCE SC seeks Centre's reply on PIL for uniform grounds of maintenance, alimony for all New Delhi: The Supreme Court Wednesday sought a response from the Centre on a plea seeking laying down of 'gender and religion neutral' uniform grounds of award of maintenance and alimony for all citizens in matrimonial disputes as per the spirit of Constitution and the international conventions.

BUSINESS DCM33 BIZ-CAB-LD-SPECTRUM Cabinet approves next round of spectrum auction New Delhi: The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved the next round of spectrum auction to be held in March in which frequencies of 2,251 megahertz would be sold, Communications Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

DCM21 BIZ-LPG-PRICE-HIKE LPG price up by Rs 50, ATF rises by 6.3% New Delhi: Cooking gas LPG price on Wednesday was increased by Rs 50 per cylinder, the second hike in rate this month following firming of international prices.

FOREIGN FGN9 US-NDAA-INDIA US Congress passes defence policy bill that calls out Chinese aggression against India Washington: The US Congress has officially passed the USD 740 billion defence policy bill, which among other things include calling out Chinese aggression against India along the Line of Actual Control (LAC). By Lalit K Jha FGN18 NASA-INDIAN-SPACEX Indian-American Raja Chari among 3 astronauts selected by NASA for SpaceX Crew-3 mission Washington: Indian-American US Air Force Colonel Raja Chari has been selected as the Commander of the SpaceX Crew-3 mission to the International Space Station (ISS) by NASA and the European Space Agency.

FGN3 US-GANDHI-STATUE Desecration of Mahatma Gandhi's statue appalling: White House Press Secy Washington: White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany has described as 'appalling' the desecration of Mahatma Gandhi's statue outside the Indian embassy here and said his reputation should be respected, especially in the US capital. By Lalit K Jha.

SPORTS SPF16 SPO-CRI-IND-LD PREVIEW 'Test of Night Life': India face Aussie might in Pink Ball affair Adelaide: A peerless Virat Kohli and his 'fearless' India would look to unleash their might on an Australian team which is ready for revenge but not exactly in 'pink of health' ahead of the first Day/Night Test starting here on Thursday. PTI CK