Pratibha Patil, Shashank Manohar high scorers for Vidarbha in 2007

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Nagpur, Dec 20 (UNI) The elevation of two individuals from Vidarbha to coveted posts at national level marked the high points for this region of Maharashtra in 2007.

The people of this region first celebrated the election of Pratibhatai Patil, who has her 'sasural' (in-laws' place) in Amravati, as President of India who in the process also became the first woman and the first person from Maharashtra to occupy the highest constitutional post.

The already excited lot got another reason to rejoice as Shashank Manohar, President of Vidarbha Cricket Association (VCA), was elevated from the post of Vice President of the Board for Control of Cricket in India (BCCI) to that of President-elect of what is considered the world's richest sports body.

SAMUELS EPISODE: And while on sports, Nagpur hogged the headlines after the city police claimed that West Indian player Marlon Samuels contacted a bookie in Delhi on telephone during the one-day international (ODI) match that they played against India in here on January 21. However, the police said they had been unable to establish if there was any match fixing during the game.

Later, Nagpur was in the news once again on the cicket front, although for a different reason altogether. An aircraft of a private airline, carrying some members of the Indian and Australian cricket teams to Mumbai, made an emergency landing after suffering a bird hit shortly after take-off from the city airport. The two teams had played a one-day international (ODI) in Nagpur the previous day.

THE POLITICAL THEATRE: A skit was played out in the political theatre of the region in the year that went by. The Congress suffered a jolt when it lost the by-election from Ramtek Lok Sabha constituency by a huge margin.

The by-election was necessitated because of resignation of Subodh Mohite, who was elected in 2004 on a Shiv Sena ticket. He resigned from the party and the House to join the Congress. Mr Mohite contested the by-poll as a Congress nominee, while the Shiv Sena fielded the winning candidate Prakash Jadhav.

Ramtek also saw the Congress expelling former Maharashtra minister Ranjit Deshmukh for rebelling against the official party nominee and entering the fray as an independent after being denied a ticket for the by-poll. However, he failed even to retain his deposit.

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