HIGHLIGHTS AT 9.45 PM

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New Delhi, Mar 23 (PTI) These are the top stories at 9.45 PM: NATION DEL85 LDALL VIRUS Vaccine for all above 45 years from April 1: Govt, amid surge in cases; MHA issues new guidelines New Delhi: COVID-19 vaccine will be made available for everyone above 45 years from April 1 as the Centre on Tuesday announced expanding the inoculation drive amid a surge in new cases with the doubling time having sharply reduced since the start of this month.

DEL81 WATER-LD INDOPAK India justifies designs of Pakal Dul, Lower Kalnai hydro projects in J-K as Pakistan objects New Delhi: Pakistan raised objections to the designs of Pakal Dul and Lower Kalnai hydropower plants in Jammu and Kashmir and sought more information on the projects in Ladakh sanctioned after the abrogation of Article 370 as the Indus Commissioners of the two countries met here on Tuesday, sources said.

DEL79 LS-FM-PETROL Ready to discuss bringing petrol, diesel under GST at next Council meet: FM New Delhi: Amidst outcry over high taxes on motor fuel, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday said she would be 'glad' to discuss the suggestion of bringing petrol and diesel under the ambit of the Goods and Services Tax at the next meeting of the GST Council.

DEL11 VIRUS-LD CASES India's COVID-19 active caseload rises to 3,45,377 New Delhi: India recorded 40,715 coronavirus cases in a day, taking the nationwide infection tally to 1,16,86,796, while the active caseload at 3,45,377 registered an increase for the 13th day in a row, the Union health ministry said on Tuesday.

DEL76 SHAH-LD INTERVIEW BJP will win more than 200 seats in Bengal, improve tally in Assam: Amit Shah Udalguri (Assam): Home Minister Amit Shah said Tuesday the Congress' tie-up with the AIUDF will be a factor in the BJP-led alliance's win in the Assam assembly polls as voters will back the saffron party decisively because its main rival cannot stop the influx of illegal immigrants by joining hands with Badruddin Ajmal, accused by the ruling bloc of protecting infiltrators. By Kumar Rakesh DEL23 LOCKDOWN-ANNIVERSARY-LD RECALL Gurgaon lab technician recalls 'uncertain' days and frantic pace of work during COVID lockdown New Delhi: As the world around him remained locked in homes amid uncertainty and fear over the novel coronavirus, 37-year-old Ananta Kumar Saha would wake up every morning, wrap himself in a PPE kit and go door to door to collect swab samples and ferry them to labs for testing. By Kunal Dutt DEL45 LOCKDOWN-ANNIVERSARY-TABLIGHI A year after controversial meet, Markaz chief yet to join probe New Delhi: A year after Tabligh-e-Jamaat's Markaz in Nizamuddin West came under criticism for holding a religious congregation amid the COVID-19 outbreak, its cleric Maulana Saad Kandhalvi against whom an FIR was registered in connection with the incident is yet to join the probe despite several notices by Delhi Police.

DEL57 LOCKDOWN-ANNIVERSARY-LD COURTS Courts deliver justice despite challenges posed by COVID-19 lockdown New Delhi: The unprecedented challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, including the nationwide lockdown a year ago, failed to deter the judiciary from delivering justice as courts across the country adopted virtual mode of proceedings which also tested the robustness of its digital infrastructure.

DEL13 LOCKDOWN-ANNIVERSARY-SPORTS One year since disruption: How Indian sports adapted to COVID conundrum New Delhi: The fans have largely gone missing, the training protocols have undergone a sea change and bio-bubbles have become the new normal despite the growing concerns over the mental toll they are taking.

DEL37 PB-COVID-2NDLD STRAIN 81 pc of 401 Punjab samples show UK variant, Amarinder asks PM to widen vaccine ambit Chandigarh: Eighty-one per cent of the 401 samples sent by the government for genome sequencing have tested positive for the UK variant of COVID-19, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said on Tuesday, asking the Centre to widen the vaccination net to cover those younger than 60.

DEL28 LSQ-CAA-RULES Time to frame CAA rules extended by Parliament New Delhi: The government has been granted time till April 9 by Lok Sabha and July 9 by Rajya Sabha to frame rules under the citizenship law.

PAR21 RS-LD ADJOURN RS to discuss bill to give more power to Delhi L-G on Wednesday New Delhi: Rajya Sabha will take up on Wednesday a bill which seeks to make it clear that the 'government' in Delhi means the 'Lieutenant Governor', as the House witnessed repeated brief adjournments during the day following uproar by opposition parties which termed the proposed legislation 'unconstitutional'.

BOM17 CG-LD NAXAL-BLAST Five policemen killed as Naxals blow up bus in Chhattisgarh Raipur: Five police personnel were killed and 13 others injured as Naxals blew up the bus in which they were traveling in Chhattisgarh's Narayanpur district on Tuesday, senior police officials said. BUSINESS DEL74 BIZ-CAIRN-ARBITRATION-APPEAL India files appeal against Cairn arbitration award New Delhi: India is believed to have challenged in a court in The Hague an arbitration tribunal verdict that overturned its demand for Rs 10,247 crore in back taxes from Cairn Energy Plc -- the second time in three months that it has refused to accept an international award against retrospective tax. LEGAL LGD14 SC-2NDLD MORATORIUM No compound or penal interest be charged from borrowers during moratorium period, directs SC New Delhi: In a major relief to borrowers, the Supreme Court Tuesday directed that no compound or penal interest be charged for the six-month moratorium announced last year amid the COVID-19 pandemic and the amount already recovered is to be refunded or adjusted in the next instalment of loan account. LGD19 SC-PARAM BIR SC to hear Mumbai ex-CP's plea on Wednesday for CBI probe against Maha home minister New Delhi: The Supreme Court will Wednesday hear the plea by Mumbai's former Police Commissioner Param Bir Singh seeking direction for immediate 'impartial and fair' CBI probe into alleged corrupt malpractices of Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh.

FOREIGN FGN71 UNHRC-LANKA-2NDLD INDIA India abstains during vote on resolution at UNHRC; urges Sri Lanka to fulfill its commitments Geneva: India, which abstained during the vote on a strong resolution against Sri Lanka's human rights practices at the UNHRC, on Tuesday urged Colombo to fulfill its commitments on the devolution of political authority, to carry forward the process of reconciliation and address the aspirations of the Tamil community in the island nation.

FGN57 PAK-QURESHI-JAISHANKAR-REPORT Qureshi to attend ‘Heart of Asia’ conference in Tajikistan, may hold meeting with Jaishankar: Report Islamabad: Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi will travel to Tajikistan later in the month to participate in the ‘Heart of Asia’ conference, which is expected to be attended by his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar, sparking speculation of a possible meeting between the two amidst peace overtures from the Pakistani Army, according to a media report here. By Sajjad Hussain. PTI HDA