HDFC Life accuses LIC agent of spreading lies about Karkare claim


More than four years after he was killed by Lashkar-e-Toiba terrorists in the 26/11 carnage, a controversy has erupted over the life insurance claim of then Anti-Terrorism Squad chief Hemant Karkare, with HDFC Life asking Life Insurance Corporation to take action against its employees and agents for alleging that while the state-owned insurer settled claims by Karkare's family within 24 hours, HDFC Life failed to do so.

HDFC Life has sent a legal notice to LIC demanding action. LIC, on the other hand, is apparently preparing to file a defamation case against the private insurer for dragging its name into the controversy, sources said.

The controversy revolves around postings on the Facebook page of HDFC Life on January 24 including one by a man named Dhananjay Shanware who claimed to be an LIC agent and posted a message on a LIC letterhead that said it settled claims of the slain ATS chief within 24 hours, but HDFC Life failed to do so.

"HDFC Standard Life Insurance rejected the claim outright saying that Hemant Karkare entered the shooting place risking his life voluntarily and did not take precautions even after knowing that his life will be at risk," said the letter.

However, HDFC Life documents suggest the claims were settled within two days.

HDFC Life had sent a legal notice early last week asking LIC to take action against their agents and employees involved in such activity. While it is yet to receive a response, HDFC Life claims it has also communicated the same with the top management of LIC.

"We are not fighting against any company, but we want the company to take action against their people who are involved in such bad practices," said Sanjay Tripathy, EVP and head marketing, product and direct channel, HDFC Life.

When reached for its version, LIC declined to comment on the notice sent by HDFC Life and its next course of action. But an LIC official, who did not wish to be quoted, told The Indian Express that LIC is contemplating filing a defamation suit against HDFC Life for dragging its name into the controversy.

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