2-8-12, Sanskrit Verse
Hruisht`aaha khalu bhavishyamti
Raamasya paramaaha striyaha
snushhaaste bharata kshaye.
Dasaratha was getting ready to coronate Rama. Kaikeeyi's maid heard about it, approaches her mistress and cautions her about her fate if Rama was to become the King.
Rama’s best women will be happy. When Bharata’s status falls, your daughters-in-law will be unhappy.
*The word ‘daughters-in-law’ clearly indicates that Bharata had more than one wife.
*The use of the adjective ‘parama (the best)’ for ‘striyah (women)’ indicates that Rama’s women were not ordinary servants or concubins. They were his best women, that means they could have been wives.
Sentence structure is to be parallel for comparisons. Kaikeyi’s daughters-in-law and Rama’s servants cannot be compared. Comparison is implied between Bharata’s wives and Rama’s wives.
*Indians believe that Rama strictly followed monogamy (one wife). One wife and one arrow is the maxim for Rama. Many speakers on Rama accept this view. However, the definition of a "wife" in Ramayana confuses readers. The priests and Gurus who speak on Ramayana take into account only those wives who are authoised to sit beside the husband during religious ceremonies and functions. These are called "dharma patnis (wives for the purpose of religion and married as per religious rituals" . If this parameter is accepted as standard, Sita may be the only one wife falling under class 1. Then Rama may have class 2 wives, whom we cannot call concubins (class 3 wives).
Image of Rama as a great human and a Supreme God is based on the assumption of his virtues, the chief among which is his "eeka patni vratam (adherence to monogamy)". No Hindu can imagine a situation where the God Rama will have a number of women. It becomes a blasphemy.