HIGHLIGHTS AT 9.45 PM

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New Delhi, Feb 1 (PTI) These are the top stories at 9.45 pm: DEL158 LDALL BUDGET Budget-2021: Spending boost to lift pandemic-hit economy, new cess to finance agri infra New Delhi: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday proposed a sharp increase in expenditure on infrastructure, doubling of healthcare spending and raising the cap on foreign investment in insurance in her Budget for the next fiscal in a bid to pull the economy out of the pandemic-induced trough.

DEL67 BUD-AGRI Govt proposes 10 pc hike in farm loan target for FY22; announces agri infra development cess New Delhi: Asserting that the government is committed towards farmers' welfare, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday proposed 10 per cent hike in the farm loan disbursal target to Rs 16.5 lakh crore in the Budget, and introduced an agri-infra and development cess of up to 100 per cent to create post-harvest infrastructure for improving farmers' income.

DEL103 BUD-LD PM Budget focuses on wealth and wellness; has villages, farmers at its heart: PM New Delhi: Asserting that villages and farmers are at the heart of the Union Budget presented on Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said it has put a lot of emphasis on strengthening the farming sector and increasing farmers' income while making an allocation to further empower agriculture mandis.

DEL172 BUD-2NDLD RAHUL Govt handing over India's assets to crony capitalists: Rahul Gandhi on Union Budget New Delhi: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi hit out at the Centre on Monday following the presentation of the 2021-22 Union Budget, alleging that the Narendra Modi government plans to handover India's assets to crony capitalists.

DEL176 PM-LD NETANYAHU India will deploy all its resources to punish terror attack perpetrators: Modi to Netanyahu New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday to convey his strong condemnation of the terror attack near the Israeli Embassy here on January 29 and asserted that India will deploy all its resources to find and punish the perpetrators.

DEL173 DL-FARMERS-CHAKKA-JAM Protesting farmers announce 3-hour nationwide 'chakka jam' on Feb 6 New Delhi: Farmer unions Monday announced a countrywide 'chakka jam' on February 6 when they would block national and state highways for three hours in protest against the internet ban in areas near their agitation sites, harassment allegedly meted out to them by authorities, and other issues.

DEL162 LD JOURNALIST Farmers' protest: Delhi court to pass order on arrested journalist's bail plea on Tue; Editors Guild demands his immediate release New Delhi: A Delhi court will pass the order on Tuesday on the bail plea of freelance journalist Mandeep Punia arrested by the Delhi Police from the Singhu border protest site here where farmers are agitating against the three contentious agri laws.

DEL113 LD TWITTER-ACCOUNTS WITHHELD Govt asks Twitter to block 250 tweets/accounts for 'provocative' posts linked to farmers' protest New Delhi: Twitter has blocked several accounts and tweets after the government asked the micro-blogging platform to take action against 250 handles and posts for containing 'false and provocative content' related to the ongoing farmers' agitation, according to sources.

DEL156 CONG-2NDLD-PB-YOUTH-SHAH Punjab Cong leaders meet Shah, raise concerns over people 'missing' after Red Fort incident New Delhi: Congress MP Manish Tewari, and Punjab ministers Sukhjinder Randhawa and Sukhbinder Singh Sarkaria met Home Minister Amit Shah in the Parliament House Monday, requesting him to trace the whereabouts of the people 'missing' since the tractor parade violence in the national capital on January 26.

DEL14 MEA-INDIA MYANMAR COUP India expresses deep concern over coup in Myanmar; monitoring situation closely New Delhi: India on Monday expressed 'deep concern' over the military coup in Myanmar and detention of the country's top political leaders, saying it has always been steadfast in supporting the democratic transition in that country DEL11 VIRUS-LD CASES COVID-19: India records 11,427 new cases, 117 fatalities New Delhi: With 11,427 new coronavirus cases being reported in a day, India's COVID-19 tally has increased to 1,07,57,610, while the number of people who have recuperated from the disease has surged to 1,04,34,983, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Monday.

BUSINESS DEL102 BIZ-LD STOCKS Sensex skyrockets 2,315 pts as pro-growth Budget unleashes animal spirits Mumbai: Markets roared back to life on Monday after six days of deep declines as Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented an expansionary Union Budget for 2021-22 which sought to pull the economy out of the pandemic-induced slump through increased spending on infrastructure, healthcare and farm sectors without resorting to higher taxation.

FOREIGN FGN46 MYANMAR-2NDLDALL COUP Military stages coup in Myanmar, detains Aung San Suu Kyi Naypyitaw: Myanmar's military staged a coup Monday and detained senior politicians including Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi - a sharp reversal of the significant, if uneven, progress toward democracy the Southeast Asian nation has made following five decades of military rule. PTI HDA