On the recent reports that Iran had sidelined India from the Chabahar port railway project, New Delhi has contradicted Iran’s assertions that it is out of the Chabahar-Zahedan rail project.
Senior Indian officials saying that New Delhi remained “committed” to financing and building the railway which is a vital part of the Chabahar port project, reports the Times of India.
TOI quoting senior officials at the Indian embassy in the Iranian capital said, “India is committed to building the Chabahar-Zahedan railway line and is continuously engaged with Iranian authorities concerned to take this important project forward.”
The Iranian government source according to the reports explained – It was anticipated that besides investment in the Chabahar Port, New Delhi could also play a significant role in financing and building this vital transit route from Chabahar to Zahedan and from Zahedan to Sarakhs at the border with Turkmenistan which in the absence of active Indian engagement & funding is being developed by Iran.
The Zahedan railway project reportedly has two elements — the ‘sub-structure’ which is earth-moving and making the ground for the tracks and the ‘super-structure’ which comprises the tracks and rakes. Tehran is responsible for the first part while New Delhi for the rest. However, the Indian part needs steel which is presently under US sanctions, and this has caused a delay, states the TOI report.
The port, however, is doing exhilarating business and has been shielded from US sanctions purely by Indian diplomacy.