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priya (student)     03 December 2011

When it comes to adultery, women can't be blamed: SC

Women cannot be accused of adultery as the law considers the position of a married woman “almost” as a property of her husband, ruled the Supreme Court in a recent judgement. The judgement rendered by a Bench of Justices Aftab Alam and RM Lodha discussed the criticism emerging out of this controversial provision of Section 497 dealing with the offence of ‘adultery’ under the Indian Penal Code (IPC). However, it failed to redress the same and instead, followed the letter of the law to acquit a woman accused under this crime. The case related to Andhra Pradesh where the police had accused a married man and his girlfriend of having illicit relationship on a complaint given by the man’s wife. She alleged cruelty and torture ever since her marriage in February 2007, claiming that her husband maintained illicit relationships with the girlfriend even in her presence. On the complaint given by wife, an offence of adultery (Section 497) was slapped against the man and his girlfriend although Section 497 specifically states, “In such case, the wife shall not be punishable as an abettor.” Using the benefit of this exception under law, the accused woman approached the apex court after the Andhra Pradesh HC dismissed her petition and directed her to be prosecuted for the crime. Realising the prevailing confusion which possibly could have led the High Court to order so, the apex Bench said, “The provision is currently under criticism from certain quarters for showing a strong gender bias for it makes the position of a married woman almost as a property of her husband.” Even the language of Section 497 is worded in like manner, “Whoever has s*xual intercourse with a person who is and whom he knows or has reason to believe to be the wife of another man….” Justice Alam, who wrote the judgment for the Bench said, “In terms of the law as it stands, it is evident from a plain reading of the Section that only a man can be proceeded against and punished for the offence of adultery.” Giving effect to this reasoning, it went on to quash the case against the petitioner woman by saying, “The mere fact that the appellant is a woman makes her completely immune to the charge of adultery and she cannot be proceeded against for that offence.” https://dailypioneer.com/nation/24986-when-it-comes-to-adultery-women-cant-be-blamed-sc.html


 9 Replies


Unfair Judgement.Women are no more weak and ABLA for adultary .

If adultary law covers women like it is in men , then half of 498A/divorce/separation/rcr will get vanished from India.

2 Like

DEFENSE ADVOCATE.-firmaction@g (POWER OF DEFENSE IS IMMENSE )     03 December 2011

Protection to woman even is she may be seducer. It is a myth than men intices woman but it will take long long time for law to catch up with realities.

Shantanu Wavhal (Worker)     03 December 2011

has SC errored in this judgement ??

isnt SC bound to follow IPC 497 ??

so what is in question ??

SC / IPC ??

1 Like


yes amit..but this section should be reviewed along with 498A.

1 Like

Nadeem Qureshi (Advocate/ nadeemqureshi1@gmail.com)     04 December 2011

i think SC judge opinion is best other then me

Chalta Purja of 498a (Biwiyon Kaa Baap)     04 December 2011

When I become Lokpal, I will give this judgement:

"Only men are allowed multiple aduletries but women shall be only confined to kitchens in their Burkhas's and death sentence to women who even see another man".

**Vikram** (Managing Partner)     11 February 2012

A man can be charged with adultry only when he shares the bed with a married woman..


Because of this woman in question, two lives are spoiled..

(1) her husband's..because his wife slept with another man..what about his marriage, his children..imagine the trauma on the children, if they are grown up and when they come to know that her/his mother shared the bed with another man..


(2) The other man, with whom she slept...he faces trial and if convicted..goes to Jail...


What a world...what a shame...I dont want to know what will I do if I ever come across this type of women...



1 Like



Important Observation by SC here, please Re-Read



Section 497. Adultery

Whoever has s*xual intercourse with a person who is and whom he knows or has reason to believe to be the wife of another man, without the consent or connivance of that man, such s*xual intercourse not amounting to the offence of rape, is guilty of the offence of adultery, and shall be punished with imprisonment of either descripttion for a term which may extend to five years, or with fine, or with both. In such case the wife shall not be punishable as an abettor.

Above Law clearly States Wives are "Ablaa Naari", Even She herself Invites you for this offence, Same she can book you later under Very this Section.

Section 375. Rape

375. Rape.—A man is said to commit “rape” who, except in the case hereinafter excepted, has s*xual intercourse with a woman under circumstances falling under any of the six following de­scripttions:—

 First.— Against her will.

 Secondly.—Without her consent.

 Thirdly.— With her consent, when her consent has been obtained by putting her or any person in whom she is interested in fear of death or of hurt.

 Fourthly.—With her consent, when the man knows that he is not her husband, and that her consent is given because she beleves that he is another man to whom she is or believes herself to be law­fully married.

 Fifthly.— With her consent, when, at the time of giving such consent, by reason of unsoundness of mind or intoxication or the administration by him personally or through another of any stupe­fying or unwholesome substance, she is unable to understand the nature and consequences of that to which she gives consent.

 Sixthly.— With or without her consent, when she is under sixteen years of age.

Above Law Assumes Only Men can do Rape Over Women

Wheras, we see Men can also be Victim of Rape By Men or Female or Sometime Group of Females .(espcially in Girl's Hostel, I Still Remember One case of Pune! )

BUT we live in Society Today, Where in METRO URBAN area, Girls in college or at workplace wear provoking cloths, and many times Lure / Excites / Seduce man for those Acts.

Moreover women also Haraass / Blackmail men at workplace with False Sexual harassment, EVEN she had Consented Sex before with same Guy. These things are Common.

Our Incredible India Assumes, Women can’t involve in Adultery, nor indulge in Rape. Of course these laws need to amended. Especially in today’s Era to make it Gender Neutral to get Result of Gender Equality.


2 Like

bhima balla (none)     02 March 2012

Cannot blame SC for this.It is the way the law is written by the parliament. this law is struck in British times. Needs to change. But NCW and other woman's organizations don't want it to change. Woman is allowed to have fun either way.

1) She has fun while having s*x with another man-while husband is ignorant of it.

2) She is not considered a culprit and has no consequences-just the husband suffers.

Why do women's organization want to keep this archaic practice when they advocate women's empowerment.The underlying basis of this states woman is the property of the husband-Is she a property or an individual? If property there can be no divorce or maintenance. There shall be nothing called violence against ones wife-since she is property! It is the owner's prerogative to treat the property anyway he deems fit!

It is the law that must be changed-so SC can give a different verdict.

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