Independent candidate wins Daman & Diu Lok Sabha seat; 3-time BJP MP loses

Daman: The independent candidate Umesh Babubhai Patel defeated the three-term MP Lalu Patel in the only Lok Sabha seat in the Union Territory of Daman and Diu. The incumbent MP and BJP candidate lost by a margin of 6,225 votes, receiving 36,298 votes, while Umesh garnered 42,523 votes. Congress’s Ketan Patel, who finished third, secured 11,258 votes.

After the win Umesh dedicated his victory to the people, stating, “I fought alone, and with the love and support of the voters of the Union Territory, I have been elected. The main reason for my victory is my commitment to the public and addressing their issues. I will continue to take their concerns to the authorities and work to resolve them.”

This marks Umesh’s second electoral attempt. In his first run during the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, he received 19,938 votes but lost to Lalu Patel.

When asked which party he would support, Patel replied, “I have yet to decide, but I will make a decision that benefits the people of Daman and Diu. We will consult with the public and my core supporters.”

Umesh, an arts graduate, runs the NGO Daman Youth Action Force (DYAF), which addresses various public issues. Despite being overlooked by both the BJP and Congress, Umesh was a popular figure in the Union Territory. He gained prominence in April 2017 when DYAF opposed the Gujarat High Court’s decision to merge Daman and Diu with Gujarat for effective enforcement of the Gujarat Prohibition Act.

On April 14, 2017, Umesh was arrested after leading a large rally against the merger.

Umesh also runs Swami Vivekanand Vidhyalay in Nani Daman, which provides education to students from classes 1 to 10 in both Hindi and English.

Parliamentary Constituency 1 – Daman & Diu (Dadra & Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu)

S.N. Candidate Party EVM Votes Postal Votes Total Votes % of Votes
1 PATEL UMESHBHAI BABUBHAI Independent 42469 54 42523 46.02
2 LALUBHAI BABUBHAI PATEL Bharatiya Janata Party 36243 55 36298 39.28
3 KETAN DAHYABHAI PATEL Indian National Congress 11237 21 11258 12.18
4 UMESH PATEL Navsarjan Bharat Party 545 545 0.59
5 SAKIL LATIF KHAN Independent 323 323 0.35
6 IDRISH G MULLA Independent 247 247 0.27
7 PATEL UMESHBHAI BABU Independent 238 238 0.26
8 NOTA None of the Above 977 1 978 1.06
Total 92279 131 92410