CPI(M) doubts US pressure on IPI issue

CPI(M) doubts US pressure on IPI issue

New Delhi: CPI(M) on Monday suggested that the delay in implementation of Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) gas pipeline project could be because of US pressure on New Delhi and asked the government not to do mere “posturing" on the issue.

“We think there has been a lot of delay in the pipeline issue. Our doubt is that since the UPA government has signed the nuclear deal, US pressure is also there on it," CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury told reporters here when asked to comment on the IPI project.

“The government should not just do posturing with Iran," he said in the backdrop of visit of External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee to Iran during which the pipeline issue figured prominently.

Negotiations on the $7.4 billion project have been deadlocked mainly due to dispute over pricing and India’s concerns over security and assured supply of gas.

During Mukherjee’s visit, India and Iran decided to set up a trilateral mechanism at Petroleum Minister level and call its meeting soon to break the logjam.

Mukherjee also sought to set right the perception that India was going slow on the IPI because of its civil nuclear deal with the US, saying “one is not exclusive to the other".