Indian leader urges govt to pursue IPI Gas Pipeline


A senior Indian leader Monday urged the government to pursue IPI Gas Pipeline during meetings with visiting Iranian foreign minister.

Iranian FM Mohammad Javad Zarif will arrive in New Delhi on February 27 on a two-day visit. He is expected to hold talks with External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on a range of bilateral, regional and international issues.

In an exclusive interview with IRNA, Sitaram Yechury, Rajya Sabha Member (Upper House of Indian Parliament), said: “Succumbing to the US pressure our government desisted from going ahead with the $7.4 billion Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) gas pipeline project. This blatant interference in India’s sovereign affairs must be rejected and the pipeline project should revive without delay.”

He was of the view that in coming years, India would become the largest consumer of energy and the demand for gas will increase. “Government must take the wise decision and not to scuttle the project, but to make efforts to implement it sooner,” stressed CPM leader.

Yechury, the politburo member of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) (CPI-M), noted that as Pakistan is also the partner in the project, undoubtedly the IPI pipeline will make spin-off benefits for the country.

He further referred to Iran as both a crucial energy partner and a historical ally.

Elaborating his remarks, he said despite facing difficulties in receiving payments for the oil exported to India, Tehran continued the supply.

Yechury, who is also the prolific writer and a frequent columnist, welcomed the visit to New Delhi of the Iranian foreign minister and asked the government to avail the opportunity.

Hoping for the fruitful outcome of the visit, he underlined the need to further strengthen relations to promote business opportunities and grow trade between the two friendly nations.