Dewani marriage was not officially registered

2010-12-05 13:58

The father of the Swedish honeymooner Anni Dewani, who was murdered in Cape Town, has disclosed that her marriage to British businessman Shrien Dewani was not officially registered.

Vinod Hindocha confirmed to British newspaper The Daily Mail that the couple’s lavish wedding ceremony in Mumbai, India, in ­November is not recognised as a formal marriage in law.

He told The Daily Mail: “My wife and I are Anni’s closest relatives – not Shrien.

“She was not formally married to Shrien.

“According to the authorities (in Britain and Sweden), Anni was still Miss Hindocha when she died.

“The marriage registration was not going to happen until March next year, when Anni had her birthday in Britain and they switched rings, which is our custom.”

The newspaper reported that it had confirmation from the British High Commission in Delhi that the union was never registered in ­India, and therefore would not have been recognised in Britain or Sweden either.

Anni (28) was found dead after she and Shrien (30) were abducted while travelling in a taxi in Gugulethu on November 13.

Her murder has been shrouded in speculation after reports about Shrien’s conflicting accounts of what happened that night.

Shrien is reported to be under ­sedation at his West Country home in Britain.

Three people, including the driver of the taxi, Zola Tongo, have been arrested over the murder.

Tongo, Xolile Mgeni (23) and Mzwamadoda Qwabe (26) will ­appear again in the Wynberg ­Magistrate’s Court tomorrow.

Meanwhile, police sources said this week they were still hunting for a fourth suspect.

The 31-year-old man works at a luxury hotel in Cape Town but has been on “sick leave” since the night of the murder.

» Julian Jansen contributed to this report

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