GS Paper I- History and Geography of the World and Society.

Rashid Khan Becomes Youngest Captain In International Cricket.

Background

  • At 19 years and 165 days of age, highly-rated Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan, the No. 1 Twenty20 International bowler, on 4th March 2018 became the youngest captain in the history of international cricket.
  • The World’s No. 2 ODI bowler Rashid led Afghanistan, after regular skipper Asghar Stanikzai was diagnosed with appendicitis, against Scotland in their opening match of the ICC World Cup qualifiers at Bulawayo in Zimbabwe. It was not a good start for the youngster as a skipper with Afghanistan losing the match by seven wickets to Scotland.

 

Highlights Of The Development-

  • The previous record was held by Rajin Saleh, 20 years and 297 days, when he led Bangladesh’s ODI side against South Africa in a ICC Champions Trophy match in Birmingham on September 12, 2004.
  • The Test record is still held by Tatenda Taibu, who at the age of 20 years and 358 days led Zimbabwe against Sri Lanka at Harare in 2004.
  • Sachin Tendulkar holds the record of the youngest Indian to lead an ODI team. In 1996, Tendulkar was made captain of the limited-over side at the age of 23 years and 126 days against Sri Lanka in Colombo.
  • And in Test cricket, the Indian record is with late Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi who captained India against West Indies at Bridgetown in 1962 at the age of 21 years and 77 days. The ‘Tiger’ Patuadi held the longest-format record for more than four decades before Taibu claimed the distinction in 2004.

Sources- TOI.

GS Paper II- Governance.

Bengaluru’s First Helitaxi Service, First In The Country, Takes Off.

Background

  • App-based taxi service took on a whole new meaning on 5th March, 2018 when Bengaluru’s first helitaxi service took off, ferrying passengers from Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) to Electronics City in 15 minutes. The helitaxi made two trips, with the first one taking off at 6.30 a.m.
  • The helitaxi, touted to be the first such service in the country, was announced in August 2017 by Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha.

 

Highlights Of The Development-

  • The service is being offered by KIA in partnership with Thumby Aviation Pvt Ltd, in an effort to reduce the time taken to travel to the city from the international airport.
  • Those who want to avail the service can book a seat through the app (Heli Taxii). The fare is ₹4,130 per person, including GST. Once passengers exit the arrival lounge, the company has arranged vehicles to ferry passengers to its facility in the KIA premises, which would be a four-minute ride. For those heading to KIA, the company vehicle will drop passengers at the departure lounge.
  • At Electronics City, the helicopter will land in Thumby Aviation’s facility in Phase I, near the toll plaza.

Sources- The Hindu.

GS Paper III- Economic Development.

Government Raises Import Tax On Crude, Refined Palm Oil.

Background

  • India has raised import tax on crude palm oil to 44 percent from 30 percent and lifted the tax on refined palm oil to 54 percent from 40 percent, the government said in a statement on 1st March, 2018.
  • A hike in India’s import tax on palm oil could dent overseas purchases by the world’s biggest edible oil importer, while making imports of soyoil and sunflower oil lucrative for the country’s refiners.
  • Lower imports by such a major buyer could also weigh on prices for producers of palm oil, used in everything from soap to foodstuffs. Palm oil futures traded on the Bursa Malaysia Derivative Exchange have fallen more than 3% since the duty was increased on Thursday.

 

Highlights Of The Development-

  • Palm oil imports could drop by 500,000 tonnes in the 2017/18 marketing year that started on 1 November,  2017 said Govindbhai Patel, managing director of trading firm G.G. Patel & Nikhil Research Company. The country imported 9.3 million tonnes of palm oil in the previous marketing year.
  • India primarily imports palm oil from Indonesia and Malaysia, the world’s top two producers.
  • Import duties on crude and refined soyoil remain 30% and 35% respectively. Meanwhile crude sunflower oil carries a 25% import tax, while refined sunflower oil is taxed at 35%.
  • India imports soyoil from Argentina and Brazil, sunflower oil from Ukraine and Argentina, and canola oil from Canada.
  • Palm oil output is expected to rise in line with seasonal trend from March onwards, putting further pressure on palm oil prices as stocks are expected to build. Malaysia in January had suspended export taxes on crude palm oil for a three-month period to encourage demand and support prices.

Sources- Livemint.