INDIA PLANS TO CONSTRUCT A 900-KM RAILWAY
LINE TO CONNECT CHABAHAR PORT
Hajigak, 130 km west of Kabul in Bamiyan province, holds Afghanistan’s largest iron ore deposits.
Of the 22 companies shortlisted for the bid for these mines 14 are Indian, including a consortium led by the public sector Steel Authority of India Limited.
With the intention to construct the Chabahar port in the limelight at the recently held NAM meet held in Tehran, the adjoining infrastructural support is again at the forefront The one is aforesaid-railway line connecting Chabahar port. Chabahar port is important for India geopolitically as it bypasses Pakistan and thus provide with India with a newer opportunity with trade potential, independent of the “Volatility” on the Western frontiers.
In a bold move to assert itself in the Af-Pak region and reduce Pakistan’s room for manoeuvre, India is finalising a plan to construct a 900-km railway line that will connect Chabahar port in Iran, being built with Indian help, to the mineral-rich Hajigak region of Afghanistan. Hajigak, 130 km west of Kabul in Bamiyan province, holds Afghanistan’s largest iron ore deposits. Of the 22 companies shortlisted for the bid for these mines 14 are Indian, including a consortium led by the public sector Steel Authority of India Limited.
Chabahar is just 72 km west of Pakistan’s Gwadar port, being built with Chinese – help. When completed, this line will throw up both tantalising geo-political and economic opportunities for India
How it will benefit India:-
- It will increase Indian leverage in Afghanistan and its strategic presence in the region. In the past, however, New Delhi has refuted Pakistani fears that India is encircling it.
- It will give Afghanistan access to the sea, thus, reducing its dependence on Pakistan.
- It will open opportunities for Indian companies to explore Afghanistan’s mineral wealth, believed to be worth $1-3 trillion (Rs 50-150 lakh crore), for mutual benefit. Just consider. the entire Indian economy is valued at $1.2 trillion (Rs 60 lakh crore);
- It will add’to the economic rationale for Indian investment in Chabahar;
- Once the entire network comprising of road, rail and port is in place, it can become a launching pad for greater economic and strategic involvement of India in the oil and mineral-rich Central Asia;
However, the greater cooperation with Iran in Chabahar i (and, presumably, in otherareas) will almost certainly upset the Americans, whose support s essential if India is to play a greater role in the region.stances and precursor chemicals and related matters. (22-12-2009)
14. Implementation Agreements for Punatsangchhu-ll and Mangdechhu HEPs. (April, 2010)
15. MoU for cooperation between the Election commissions of India and Bhutan reviewed in September 2011.
16. MoU between UPSC and RCSC renewed in September 2011.
17. Updated India-Bhutan Friendship Treaty, February 2007.
18. Agreement laying down the framework for cooperation in the field of hydropower and the Protocol to the Agreement, July 2006 and 2009-11.