HIGHLIGHTS

New Delhi, May 23 (PTI) Following are the top stories: DEL5 VIRUS-LD CASES Record jump in COVID-19 cases, 137 more deaths New Delhi: The COVID-19 cases in India saw the biggest spike for the second consecutive day on Saturday with 6,654 new infections in the last 24 hours, taking the tally to over 1.25 lakh, while the toll rose to 3,720 after 137 more deaths, the Union Health Ministry said.

DEL68 AVI-2NDLD FLIGHTS-PURI Will try to restart international flights before August: Puri New Delhi: India will try to restart a good percentage of international passenger flights before August, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Saturday said, three days after announcing resumption of domestic flights from May 25.

DEL45 CYCLONE-NDRF-WB Centre rushes 10 more NDRF teams to cyclone Amphan-hit West Bengal New Delhi: Ten fresh teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) are being rushed to West Bengal in order to speed up the relief and rescue operations post cyclone 'Amphan', officials said on Saturday.

DEL31 VIRUS-DRUGS TRIAL-REMDESIVIR Several drugs under trial for COVID-19, remedesivir leading contender: scientists New Delhi: With a vaccine still a long distance away, efforts to repurpose old medications used for other ailments provide hope of an early counter to COVID-19, say scientists, placing the antiviral remdesivir on top of the list of possible contenders.

DEL59 MHA-MIGRANTS 4 crore migrant workers in India; 75 lakh return home so far: MHA New Delhi: The Centre on Saturday said around four crore migrant labourers are engaged in various works in different parts of the country and so far 75 lakh of them have returned home in trains and buses since the nationwide lockdown was imposed.

DEL6 RAHUL-MIGRANTS-LABOURERS Cong releases documentary on Rahul's interaction with migrants New Delhi: The Congress released a documentary film on Saturday on Rahul Gandhi's interaction with a group of migrant labourers last week, demanding justice for such workers who are walking hundreds of kilometres to their homes amid the coronavirus lockdown.

DEL74 BJP-RAHUL Rahul Gandhi doing 'politics of misery' over migrants issue: BJP New Delhi: The BJP on Saturday accused Congress leader Rahul Gandhi of doing 'politics of misery' over the issue of migrants, claiming that his party did nothing to help them in states where it is in power.  DEL32 VIRUS-VACCINE-EXPERTS COVID-19 vaccine development at early stage in India; breakthrough unlikely within a year: Experts New Delhi: As Indian firms scramble to develop a vaccine for coronavirus, experts feel that research in the country is still at a nascent stage and any concrete breakthrough is not likely within a year.

DEL15 MP-CM-INTERVIEW Tablighi Jamaat members aided COVID-19 spread in Indore, Bhopal initially: MP CM New Delhi: Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said that Tablighi Jamaat members aided in the spread of coronavirus infection in the state particularly in Indore and Bhopal, and chided them for not acting 'responsibly'.

DEL9 VIRUS-LOCKDOWN-VIROLOGIST Nationwide lockdown will no longer help in COVID-19 fight: Virologist Shahid Jameel New Delhi: The nationwide lockdown will no longer help India in its fight against COVID-19, and in its place community-driven containment, isolation and quarantine strategies have to be brought into play, leading virologist Shahid Jameel said. By Uzmi Athar DEL83 VIRUS-AIIMS-DOC Eminent pulmonologist Dr J N Pande dies New Delhi: Dr Jitendra Nath Pande, an eminent pulmonologist and former head of the Department of Medicine at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in Delhi, who had tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this week, died at his residence on Saturday.

DEL67 RAIL-LOCKDOWN-2NDLD MIGRANTS Rlys to operate 2,600 Shramik Special trains in next 10 days to ferry 36 lakh home New Delhi: The Railways has drawn up a schedule to operate 2,600 Shramik Special trains over the next 10 days across the country to ferry around 36 lakh migrant workers, stranded due to the COVID-19 lockdown, to their home states, Chairman, Railway Board V K Yadav said on Saturday.

DEL71 RAIL-SHRAMIK SPECIAL-LD TALLY Rly ferries around 36 lakh migrants in 2,600 Shramik Special trains since May 1 New Delhi:The Railways has ferried around 36 lakh migrant workers on board 2,600 'Shramik Special' trains since May 1, according to official data.

CAL16 WB-CYCLONE-ARMY Army deployed in cyclone-ravaged Bengal for restoration work Kolkata: The Army was deployed in Kolkata and neighbouring districts on Saturday for restoration of essential infrastructure and services in the wake of the destruction caused by Cyclone Amphan, a defence official said.

DEL69 DL-VIRUS-LD CASES COVID death toll in Delhi mounts to 231; 591 fresh cases take total to 12,910 New Delhi:The coronavirus death toll in Delhi mounted to 231, while 591 fresh cases of COVID-19 were reported on Saturday, taking the total number of infections in the city to 12,910, authorities said.

FGN19 UN-INDIA-BANGLA-CYCLONE UN chief following cyclone Amphan situation in India, Bangla; saddened by loss of lives United Nations: UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has said that he is following the situation in India and Bangladesh after cyclone Amphan struck the two countries and expressed sadness over the loss of lives. By Yoshita Singh PTI KJ KJ