Kashmiris run for cover as a tear gas shell explodes near them during a protest in Srinagar on Friday. AP
They voiced alarm over the measures imposed by India since it revoked autonomous rule in the part of Kashmir it controls on Aug.5, including a near-total communications blackout.
"The shutdown of the internet and telecommunication networks, without justification from the government, are inconsistent with the fundamental norms of necessity and proportionality," the five experts, who are independent and do not speak for the world body, said in a statement.
"The blackout is a form of collective punishment of the people of Jammu and Kashmir, without even a pretext of a precipitating offence," they said, describing the restrictions imposed as "intrinsically disproportionate."
The experts also voiced concern about the curfew imposed across the region, with "massive numbers of troops (brought in) to enforce restrictions on the freedom of movement and of peaceful assembly, particularly in the Kashmir Valley."
Kashmir has waged a three-decade long armed rebellion against Indian rule with tens of thousands of lives, mostly civilians, lost in the conflict.
Ahead of its Aug.5 announcement, India rushed tens of thousands of extra troops to the restive region to join 500,000 already in the valley, and imposed a strict clampdown fearing further unrest.
According to security and government forces, at least 4,000 people have been detained in Indian-controlled Kashmir.
Kashmiri Muslim children hold posters in Srinagar on Friday against Indian government. AFP
The UN experts said they had received information suggesting an increase in arrests of political figures, journalists, human rights activists, protesters and others.
And they said they were deeply concerned by reports that security forces have been conducting night raids on private homes, rounding up young people.
"Such detentions could constitute serious human rights violations," the experts said, calling on the authorities to thoroughly investigate all such allegations and to ensure that any confirmed perpetrators are held responsible.
They also expressed grave concern over allegations that the whereabouts of some of those detained was unknown, warning of "the general heightened risk of enforced disappearances, which may proliferate against the backdrop of mass arrests and restricted access to the internet and other communications networks."
They also noted the "excessive use of force against protesters, including the use of live ammunition."
"India has the responsibility to use the minimum force necessary when policing protests," the experts said, insisting that deadly force could only be used as a "last resort and to protect life."
The premier's message came as the curfew and communications blackout imposed by New Delhi in Kashmir entered its 12th day. Aug.15 is also India's Independence Day, which is being observed as a black day across Pakistan to protest the brutalities in Kashmir.
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