A five-judge Constitution Bench led by Chief Justice Dipak Misra scrapped the pre-Independence provision of adultery in the Indian Penal Code (IPC), which treats a married woman as a commodity owned by her husband. Section 497 (adultery) gives a husband the exclusive right to prosecute his wife’s lover. If found guilty, the adulterer faces five years behind bars.
A similar right is not conferred on a wife to prosecute the woman with whom her husband has committed adultery. Secondly, the provision does not confer any right on the wife to prosecute her husband for adultery. Further, Section 497 the law does not take into account cases where the husband has sexual relations with an unmarried woman.
Source- The Hindu