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Current Affairs for 25 April 2016
April 25, 2016
GL vs RCB Live Scores IPL 2016: Kohli’s ton in vain, Gujarat Lions beat RCB by 6 wickets

Virat Kohli is a calculating batsman. It shows in the way he plays pure cricketing shots and maximises their impact by picking gaps. He was furious at himself after scoring 80 in Royal Challengers Bangalore’s victory two days ago because he thought he should have used 10 balls fewer. A man so in tune with his game insisted he never thought he would score a hundred today. But he did; his first in T20 cricket, achieved by hitting a wide yorker for four off the final ball of the innings. Thereafter, he wouldn’t have thought his team would lose. But they did, after putting up 180 – a total Kohli thought was 25 runs above par.

There are not many batsmen who can go toe-to-toe with the Royal Challengers captain. He averages 110 and strikes at 141 in Twenty20s this year. So Gujarat Lions had to work together, and work as perfectly as possible. The Rajkot pitch was slow and strokeplay wasn’t particularly easy. With the new ball, however, you can always bank on runs. Brendon McCullum and Dwayne Smith, who replaced Dale Steyn belted 72 in the Powerplay – a record for this season – to provide a fine start to the chase.

Suresh Raina and Dinesh Karthik built a sensible half-century stand – using the long boundaries at the SCA stadium to scamper twos to keep the asking rate in check. Karthik, who was 28 off 26 when that partnership was broken in the 16th over, accelerated to 50 off 39 and was unbeaten when the winning runs were struck with three balls to spare.


Villages must conserve water: PM

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday gave a call for water conservation in villages at a time when parts of the country are reeling under an unprecedented drought. Reports that monsoon would be 106-110 per cent of the normal this year is heartening, he said.

“To fight the drought and ensure water security, the governments will do its work. But I have also seen people making their own efforts. In several villages, there is awareness about the value of water and in such places there is sensitivity and a will to do something to conserve it,” Mr. Modi said in his address, Mann Ki Baat. “Rain water should be preserved. The water of a village should remain in the village. If we take a resolve to do that, it is possible through a mass campaign.”

The Prime Minister gave his address a feel-good ring when he hailed the one crore families that had voluntarily given up LPG connections so that the poor can get cooking gas.

Faith in people was important, he asserted. At the same time, he wondered whether a train journey could take place without a ticket-checker, on the basis of faith in the people.


Reliance buys Iran oil after six-year hiatus

Reliance Industries has bought crude oil from Iran after a six-year break and is looking to strike a long-term fixed quantity deal, post lifting of sanctions.

RIL, which operates the world’s biggest refining complex at Jamnagar in Gujarat, is looking at quickly ramping up purchases to the earlier levels of about 5 million tonnes a year.

“Re-established relationship with Iran, sourced crude oil post lifting of sanctions,” the company said in an investor presentation.

Bowing to international pressure to isolate Iran over its nuclear programme, RIL in January 2009 had stopped exporting gasoline or petrol to Iran.

And from February 2010, it stopped buying crude oil from the West Asian nation.

RIL, which has substantial investments in U.S. shale gas projects shelved its business with Iran over fears of being sanctioned.


ONGC to drill 17 exploratory wells for shale gas, oil

ONGC was given a mandate to identify a minimum of 50 nomination blocks where it will take up shale gas and oil exploration in Phase-I.

State-owned ONGC Limited is planning to explore as many as 17 shale gas and oil wells in both east and west coasts with an investment of around Rs.700 crore.

According to the minutes of a recent meeting of the Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC) of Ministry of Environment and Forests, the PSU sought the ministry’s nod to prepare Terms of Reference for exploring the wells.

A senior official of the PSU said this is the first time that the oil and gas company has taken up shale gas exploration in such a big scale. Also, it first time that it has taken up shale gas exploration in the Krishna-Godavari basin.

According to the minutes, ONGC sought permission for drilling 11 exploratory wells for shale oil and shale gas in Cambay basin at Mehsana, Ahmedabad and Bharuch districts of Gujarat, one well in Cauvery basin at Nagapattinam in Tamil Nadu and five wells in KG Basin at East and West Godavari districts of Andhra Pradesh.

Shale gas is the natural gas that is trapped within shale formations. “ONGC Ltd has proposed for exploratory drilling of 11 wells for shale oil/shale gas in Cambay basin at Mehsana, Ahmedabad, Bharuch in Gujarat. Total cost of project is Rs.366 crore,” according to the minutes of the meeting.

The costs of the projects at KG-Basin and Cauvery are Rs.217 crore and Rs.45 crore, respectively, it added.


Masterful Rossi wins Spanish GP

Valentino Rossi (C) celebrates his victory between Jorge Lorenzo (L) and Marc Marquez (R) on the podium after MotoGP race during the Spanish Moto Grand Prix in Jerez de la Frontera on April 24, 2016. PHOTO: AFP

Valentino Rossi led from start to finish with a masterly ride to win the Spanish Grand Prix here on Sunday ahead of world championship rivals Jorge Lorenzo and Marc Marquez.

Rossi remains third in the MotoGP standings despite his first win in 10 races, but the Italian moves to within 24 points of championship leader Marquez and seven points of Yamaha teammate Lorenzo.

Victory in Spain was especially sweet for Rossi after he lost out on the title last year in the final race of the season in Valencia amid claims Marquez had deliberately obstructed Rossi in the final races of the season to aid his compatriot Lorenzo’s title challenge.

“I had good pace, I had a good start and a win like this is a special taste,” said Rossi.

The seven-time world champion has now won nine races across all categories here, but this was his first success since 2009.

“I think this was the perfect weekend because we start to go faster from Friday morning,” added Rossi. “We worked very well with the bike. During the race it was fantastic. So I have to thank all the team, especially my crew.”

Rossi’s fast start ensured there was no drama at the first corner before gradually pulling away to win by over two seconds.


Queen’s letter on how she fell in love auctioned for £14,000

A two-page letter penned by the Queen on how she and Prince Philip first fell in love attracted “furious” bidding and sold for a whopping £14,000, nearly 18 times the pre-auction estimates.

The letter was written to author Betty Shew by the 21-year-old princess in 1947, months before her marriage.

The two-page note describes how the couple met, were chased by a photographer in Prince Philip’s sports car and danced at London nightclubs.

Pre-auction estimate

It was given a pre-auction estimate of £800 to £1,200, but sold for £14,000.

Describing it as a “fantastic result”, Richard Edmonds of the Chippenham Auction Rooms in Wiltshire said: “It was quite an honour to be able to sell such an important document, particularly as the country is celebrating the Queen’s 90th birthday.

“The bidding was both online and over eight phone lines. It was pretty fast and furious. At times our internet connection looked like it was lighting up,” he said.