Family Law



  • Bigamy is the condition of having two wives or two husbands at the same time.
  •  Bigamy includes polygamy (the female has more than one husband), and Polyandry (the female to have more than one husband) 
  • Monogamy means that one is permitted to have one wife or one husband at a time. 
  • Section 5(i) of the Hindu Marriage Act 1955 prohibits bigamy. 
  • Section 11 of the Hindu marriage act 1955 makes it void.
  • Section 17 of the Hindu marriage act makes it a penalty offence for Hindu males and females under sections 494 and 495 of the Indian Penal Code. 
    • Section 494: punished with imprisonment, which may be extending to seven years and fine.
    • Section 495: imprisonment for ten years and fine. 
  • A suit for Perpetual injunction by one spouse against the other can be filed under section 9 of CPC r/ w section 38 specific relief act 1963.

Should bigamy be permitted in some limited cases

  • The term lex- loci are being applied in those cases. 
  • In Goa, Daman and Diu, under Portuguese rule, a Hindu husband was permitted to take a second wife in some circumstances with the first wife’s permission. That continues to be the law on those territories. 

Right of the second wife

  • She has no status as a wife. 
  • She can claim or file a petition for nullity of her marriage under section 11.
  • She can claim interim or permanent maintenance. 

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