Bombay High Court in a compensation money claim case of the deceased Maharashtra police inspector, stated observed that as per law, if a man has two wives and are claiming his money, only the first wife will be entitled to it. Besides that, the children from both marriages will be entitled to get the money.
Bombay High Court bench of Justices SJ Kathawalla and Madhav Jamdar has observed the order orally after the state government submitted that a similar direction was given by Aurangabad High Court in a full judge bench.
Bombay High Court bench was hearing a petition filed by the second wife of an Assistant Sub-Inspector in the Maharashtra Railway Police, Suresh Hatankar who died on May 30 after getting infected with COVID-19.
The state government has promised compensation Rs 65 lakh to the inspector, on-duty. Both the wives had claimed the compensation money. Shraddha, Hatankar’s daughter from his second wife, had moved Bombay High Court requesting a proportionate amount share from the compensation amount to save her and her mother from starvation and homelessness.
State’s counsel Jyoti Chavan has told the Bombay High Court bench on Tuesday, that they are depositing the compensation amount with the court for the time HC takes to decide on the matter.
“The law says that the second wife might not get anything. But the daughter from the second wife, and the first wife and the daughter from the first marriage will be entitled to the money,” stated the bench.
ASI Hatnakar’s first wife, Shubhada and daughter Surbhi claimed that they are not aware of the second marriage of Hatnakar.
However, counsel representing Hatnakar’s second wife, Prerak Sharma argued that both Surbhi and Shubhada knew about the second marriage and family and had tried several times to contact her through Facebook. He also told the court that Hatnakar used to live with his wife and their daughter in the railway police quarters allotted to him in Dharavi.
Taking note of the information, court has asked Shubhada and Surbhi to submit an affidavit by Thursday clarifying whether they know about the second marriage or not. The matter has been posted for Thursday.
Hatnakar had performed his first marriage in 1992 and second in 1998. Shradha had claimed that both the marriages are registered with Registrar of Marriages under Hindu Marriage Act, 1955.