The Supreme Court ruled on Thursday in response to a request from the union government for clarification on whether the 2018 ruling of the top court decriminalising adultery will prevent action against military officers tried under court martial proceedings for such "unbecoming" acts with spouses of fellow officers. The ruling stated that the decriminalisation of adultery cannot stand in the way of the army taking action against officers for misconduct.
After hearing the Center's application, a five-judge panel led by justice KM Joseph stated, "After our verdict, adultery does not carry crime but it remains unethical. It does not negate the fact that adultery is wrong. Such behaviour can disrupt family life and discipline in uniformed service.
The application was argued by Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Madhavi Divan, who claimed that the Armed Forces Tribunal (AFT) had issued an order relying on the SC verdict on adultery to end proceedings against an officer accused of such an act, necessitating the need to go before the court. "This matter is coming up in a number of instances before AFT. This can lead to indiscipline within the ranks.