One thing you may expect of the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project – India will neither yes or no, and neither will Iran accept the fact that India is finally out of the project, says Rajiv Singh.
New Delhi: One thing you may expect of the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project – India will neither yes or no, and neither will Iran accept the fact that India is finally out of the project. Strategic compulsions for both to maintain a state of limbo on this issue are just too many. Now, once again, India has expressed its willingness to be part of the project even as Iranian foreign minister, Manouchehr Mottaki, readies himself for a visit to New Delhi in the coming week.
''We are interested and it is very much on the agenda,'' Indian government sources are quoted as saying in reference to the project.
Negotiations on the pipeline have for long been stuck over the issue of pricing and security. ''There are issues that need to be resolved,'' sources said, suggesting that this was a project that required patience.
The Iran–Pakistan–India gas pipeline, also known as the IPI pipeline or the Peace pipeline, is a proposed 2,775-kilometre (1,724 mile) pipeline to deliver natural gas from Iran to Pakistan and India.
Given the failure of India and Iran to settle matters to their satisfaction and India's indeterminate stance on its participation in the project, Iran floated the China bogey in April 2008, saying Mainland China had expressed an interest to participate. This was immediately picked up by Pakistan, which suggested that this would be a very good idea as it would provide a stable partner to the project and also solve the problem of continued Indian dithering.