India received a sharp nudge from the chief of the United Nations Human Rights Council as severe restrictions imposed on Kashmir entered the sixth week.
'I am deeply concerned about the impact of recent actions by the Government of India on the human rights of Kashmiris, including restrictions on internet communications and peaceful assembly, and the detention of local political leaders and activists,' the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Michelle Bachelet, said in her opening statement at the 42nd session of the Human Rights Council.
'While I continue to urge the Governments of India and Pakistan to ensure that human rights are respected and protected, I have appealed particularly to India to ease the current lock-downs or curfews; to ensure people's access to basic services; and that all due process rights are respected for those who have been detained. It is important that the people of Kashmir are consulted and engaged in any decision-making processes that have an impact on their future,' she said.
Last month, the Indian government scrapped special privileges of Jammu and Kashmir like the ability to frame its own laws and divided the state into two union territories.
To prevent a violent backlash, the centre sent additional troops and imposed curfew-like restrictions. Phone and internet lines were blocked and top political leaders, including former Chief Ministers, were detained.