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Section 497 of IPC Adultery

Whoever has sexual intercourse with s person who is an whom he knows or has a reason to believe to be the wife of another man without the consent or convenience that man such sexual intercourse not amounting to the offence of rape is guilty of the offence of adultry and shall be punished with imprisonment or either description for a term which may extend to 5 years or with fine or with both.

In such case the wife shall not be punishable as an abettor.

Section 497 of IPC was a section dealing with adultery only a man who has consensual sexual intercourse with the wife of another man without his consent could have been punished under this offence in India. The supreme Court called the law unconstitutional because it treats the husband as the master.

Joseph Shine v/s Union of India

Status disposed, petitioner -Joseph shine partner of law in development, respondent -union of India

October 2017,joseph shine a non-resident Keralite, filed public interest litigation under article 32, of the Constitution. The petition challenged the Constitutionality of the offence of Adultery under section 497.

On 27/07/2018, a 5 judge bench of supreme Court Animously stuck down section 497 of INDIAN PENAL CODE as being violative of article 14,15,and 21 of Constitution.

  • Article 14 - Right To Equality

  • Article 15- No Discrimination Against Race, Cast, Religion, Sex Or Place Of Birth

  • Article 21- Right To Life And Personal Liberty

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