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Chennai Woman Kills Self After Husband Uses SC Verdict to Justify Extramarital Affair

The woman's husband, who worked as a security guard, started distancing himself from her when she was diagnosed with tuberculosis.

Updated:October 1, 2018, 6:25 PM IST
Chennai Woman Kills Self After Husband Uses SC Verdict to Justify Extramarital Affair
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A 24-year-old woman committed suicide in Chennai's MGR Nagar after her husband said she had no right to question his extramarital affair, citing the Supreme Court’s recent verdict that adultery is no longer a crime.

Police said Pushpalatha married 27-year-old John Paul Franklin two years ago despite opposition from their families and the couple had a child.

Franklin, who was working as a security guard at a corporation park, reportedly started distancing himself from his wife after she was diagnosed with tuberculosis. When he refused to shell out money for her treatment, Pushpalatha confided in one of Franklin’s friends who informed her about his growing closeness with another woman.

The 24-year-old soon confronted her husband and threatened to file a police complaint against him if he did not sever ties with the woman. However, quoting the Supreme Court ruling, Franklin said the police would not take any action against him. Dejected, the woman hanged herself at her residence on Saturday. Police are now questioning Franklin.

The Supreme Court on Thursday quashed adultery as a criminal offence in India. A Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra declared by unanimity Section 497 in the Indian Penal Code as unconstitutional and being violative of gender equality.

The court underlined that Section 497 treats women as properties of their husbands and is hence manifestly discriminatory. It trashed the central government's defence of Section 497 that it protects sanctity of marriages.

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