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India has quit Iran gas pipeline deal, says Pakistani diplomat

India has exited from a gas pipeline deal it earlier planned with Iran and Pakistan, Mehr news agency reported citing a Pakistani diplomat. In May this year, Tehran and Islamabad signed a $7.5-billion deal to supply gas from Iran to Pakistan.

world Updated: Sep 07, 2009 10:29 IST

India has exited from a gas pipeline deal it earlier planned with Iran and Pakistan, Mehr news agency reported citing a Pakistani diplomat.

"India definitely quitted the IPI (India-Pakistan-Iran) gas pipeline deal," the report said on Sunday citing Pakistani ambassador to Iran, Muhammad Bux Abbasi.

Iranian officials, however, said India has not yet officially declared its intention.

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Courtesy: Agencies

In May this year, Tehran and Islamabad signed a $7.5-billion deal to supply gas from Iran to Pakistan.

As per the deal, Iran would initially supply 30 million cubic meters of gas per day to Pakistan, which would be later, increased to 60 million cubic meters per day.

Iran, Pakistan and India had conceptualised the project in the 1990s to help boost peace and security in the region, besides mitigating the power crisis.

India stopped negotiations on the project due to tension with Pakistan, although Iran repeatedly encouraged New Delhi to rejoin the process, according to the report.

The pipeline would run 2,775 km when linked with the three countries.

The project would have greatly benefited India, which do not have sufficient natural gas to meet its rapidly increasing domestic demand.

Pakistan has been facing electricity shortfall of more than 3,000 megawatts and plans to generate 4,600 megawatts from Iranian gas. Islamabad has been under pressure from Washington to abandon the deal.